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Athletics at the 1936 Berlin Summer Games:

Men's Decathlon

Athletics at the 1936 Summer Games: Previous Summer Games ▪ Next Summer Games


Host City: Berlin, Germany
Venue(s): Olympic Stadium, Imperial Sports Field, Berlin
Date Started: August 7, 1936
Date Finished: August 8, 1936
Format: Scoring by 1934 point tables.

Gold: USA Glenn Morris
Silver: USA Bob Clark
Bronze: USA Jack Parker


The decathletes in 1936 were confronted by a new set of scoring tables, the 1934 tables, the first adjustment in the tables since 1920. They were a completely new concept as the 1912A and 1912B had been linear-based tables based on the world records in that era. The favorite in 1936 was expected to be the German [Hans-Heinrich Sievert], the 1934 European Champion. But he was injured and did not contest the decathlon. Starting the year the leading American was thought to be [Bob Clark] who had won the 1934-35 AAU Championships. But [Glenn Morris], a former intermediate hurdler, contested his first decathlon in April at the Kansas Relays and broke the American record. At the combined AAU/Olympic Trials in 1936 he won with a world record of 7,880 on the new tables, with Clark second. Clark led after the first day in Berlin, but Morris took the lead the next morning with the best time in the high hurdles, and he defeated Clark by almost 300 points with another world record of 7,900. [Jack Parker] completed an American medal sweep. Morris never competed in another decathlon, leaving the event after three competitions, with three American records, two world records, and the Olympic gold medal. He later had a brief stint in the NFL and played Tarzan in one movie. Leni Riefenstahl, the controversial German film maker, also revealed that she and Morris had an affair during the 1936 Olympics.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal P(1934T) P(1985T)
1 Glenn Morris 24 United States USA Gold 7,900 7.254 WR
2 Bob Clark 23 United States USA Silver 7,601 7.063
3 Jack Parker 20 United States USA Bronze 7,275 6.760
4 Erwin Huber 29 Germany GER 7,087 6.648
5 Jan Brasser 23 Netherlands NED 7,046 6.570
6 Armin Guhl 28 Switzerland SUI 7,033 6.618
7 Olle Bexell 27 Sweden SWE 7,024 6.558
8 Helmut Bonnet 26 Germany GER 6,939 6.492
9 Jerzy Pławczyk 25 Poland POL 6,871 6.446
10 Edvard Natvig 28 Norway NOR 6,759 6.453
11 Aulis Reinikka 20 Finland FIN 6,755 6.342
12 Péter Bácsalmási 27 Hungary HUN 6,395 5.979
13 Fritz Dällenbach 24 Switzerland SUI 6,311 6.030
14 Lyuben Doychev 24 Bulgaria BUL 6,307 5.944
15 Osvaldo Wenzel 24 Chile CHI 6,058 5.798
16 Josef Klein 19 Czechoslovakia TCH 5,883 5.718
17 Maurice Boulanger 27 Belgium BEL 5,097 5.020
AC Leif Dahlgren 30 Sweden SWE DNF
AC Zoltán Csányi 23 Hungary HUN DNF
AC Willy Bührer 24 Switzerland SUI DNF
AC Franz Sterzl 28 Austria AUT DNF
AC Émile Binet 28 Belgium BEL DNF
AC Martti Tolamo 29 Finland FIN DNF
AC Akilles Järvinen 30 Finland FIN DNF
AC Jānis Dimza 29 Latvia LAT DNF
AC Erwin Reimer 22 Chile CHI DNF
AC Chang Singchow 20 China CHN DNF
AC Karl Vilmundarson 26 Iceland ISL DNF