Strongman Hafthor Björnsson Tests Positive for COVID-19

The 2018 World's Strongest Man received a positive test and will quarantine for two weeks.

Less than two weeks after his debut boxing exhibition against Steven “Quiet Man” Ward in Dubai, 2018 World’s Strongest Man Hafthor Björnsson will be facing another opponent — COVID-19.

On Jan. 24, 2021, the three-time Arnold Strongman Classic Champion shared on Instagram that he tested positive for COVID-19 after taking a test the day before. You can check out his post below:


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson (@thorbjornsson)

[Related: 2008 Mr. Olympia Dexter Jackson Reveals COVID-19 Battle]

In his post, Björnsson wrote: “Little update for you guys. So Saturday I started to feel ill and decided to get tested again even though I just got tested on the 19th (Tuesday) and that test came back negative. The test I did on Saturday the 23rd came back positive and I’ve been lying in bed since.”

Björnsson goes on to state that he will isolate for two weeks and alludes to the virus being difficult to deal with, stating, “This is no joke. Stay safe, people! I don’t wish this on anyone. Hopefully, the world will be in a better place soon.”

There has been no further word on if anyone else involved in the Björnsson-Ward exhibition has tested positive since the event took place on Jan. 15, 2021. As of this writing, Ward has not shared anything regarding his health and, according to a post on his Instagram account, may have another fight soon.  


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A post shared by Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson (@thorbjornsson)

[Related: A Pro Fighter Critiques Eddie Hall and Hafthor Björnsson’s Boxing Form]

Björnsson is not the first professional strongman to contract COVID-19. Leading up to the 2020 World’s Strongest Man, on Nov. 6, 2020, Konstantine Janashia tested positive for the virus. Then, British professional strongman, Aaron Page tested positive for COVID-19. He was placed in a medically induced coma and then died shortly after on Nov. 20, 2020 (Page’s official cause of death was not announced.)

Though he’s famous for his strongman accolades (as well as his role as Ser Gregor “The Mountain” Clegane on HBO’s mega-hit series Game of Thrones), Björnsson is officially retired from the sport. He announced his retirement after winning his 10th Iceland’s Strongest Man title in August 2020.

Now, Thor is prepping for a boxing match with 2017 World’s Strongest Man Eddie Hall. The fight was announced after Björnsson pulled the all-time heaviest deadlift of 501 kilograms (beating Hall’s previous deadlift of 500 kilograms) in May 2020. Their fight is set for Sept. 18, 2021, in Las Vegas, NV. 

BarBend will update this article if and when new information regarding Björnsson’s battle with COVID-19 arises. 

Featured image: @thorbjornsson on Instagram