Leon Štukelj

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameLeon•Štukelj
Used nameLeon•Štukelj
Other namesЛеон Штукељ
Born12 November 1898 in Novo Mesto, Novo mesto (SLO)
Died8 November 1999 in Maribor, Maribor (SLO)
Measurements161 cm / 50 kg
AffiliationsSokol Maribor-Matica, Maribor (SLO)
NOC Yugoslavia
Nationality Slovenia
Medals OG
Gold 3
Silver 1
Bronze 2
Total 6


Leon Štukelj was the world’s top gymnast in the 1920s, winning 6 Olympic and 11 World Championship medals. He was the Olympic individual all-around and horizontal bars champion in 1924, rings champion in 1928, won rings silver in 1936, and individual and team all-around bronzes in 1928. Štukelj probably missed more Olympic medals as Yugoslavia did not send athletes to the 1932 Olympics due to the Great Depression. At the World Championships, he won rings, parallel bars and horizontal bar golds in 1922, rings and horizontal bar golds in 1926, team all-around and pommelled horse silvers in 1922, team all-around silver in 1926, parallel bars bronze in 1926, and team all-around and horizontal bar bronzes in 1930.

Štukelj, who took up gymnastics in 1907 with the Novo Mesto Sokol Society, graduated with a law degree in 1927, and worked as a judge in Novo Mesto, Lenart and Maribor before World War II. During the war, he was a member of the Yugoslav royalist movement, opposing Tito’s partisans. For this reason, Štukelj was imprisoned after the war and after his release was permanently barred from being a judge and was forced to work as a paralegal until his retirement.

Štukelj was the recipient of the Olympic Order in Silver in 1987 and was invited to the Opening Ceremony of the 1996 Olympics as the then oldest living Olympic champion. He was one of the Olympic Flagbearers at the ceremony and later handed out the medals to the winners of the men’s team all-around competition. In 1997 Štukelj was inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame.


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal Nationality As
1924 Summer Olympics Artistic Gymnastics (Gymnastics) YUG SLO Leon Štukelj
Individual All-Around, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold
Team All-Around, Men (Olympic) Yugoslavia 4
Horse Vault, Men (Olympic) 4
Parallel Bars, Men (Olympic) 20
Horizontal Bar, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold
Rings, Men (Olympic) 4
Pommelled Horse, Men (Olympic) 10
Rope Climbing, Men (Olympic) =10
Side Horse, Men (Olympic) 17
1928 Summer Olympics Artistic Gymnastics (Gymnastics) YUG SLO Leon Štukelj
Individual All-Around, Men (Olympic) 3 Bronze
Team All-Around, Men (Olympic) Yugoslavia 3 Bronze
Horse Vault, Men (Olympic) 28
Parallel Bars, Men (Olympic) =7
Horizontal Bar, Men (Olympic) =21
Rings, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold
Pommelled Horse, Men (Olympic) =12
1936 Summer Olympics Artistic Gymnastics (Gymnastics) YUG SLO Leon Štukelj
Individual All-Around, Men (Olympic) 32
Team All-Around, Men (Olympic) Yugoslavia 6
Floor Exercise, Men (Olympic) =46
Horse Vault, Men (Olympic) 92
Parallel Bars, Men (Olympic) 22
Horizontal Bar, Men (Olympic) 35
Rings, Men (Olympic) 2 Silver
Pommelled Horse, Men (Olympic) 39

Special Notes