Richard Simmons Height
5ft 6 ½ (168.9 cm)
American tv personality and fitness advocate. He said on Letterman back in 1994, "[I'm] Five-six and a half"
Photos by PR Photos
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Average Guess (2 Votes)
5ft 6.5in (168.9cm)
Ian C. said on 9/Feb/18
I'm certainly going long on this thread, but consider the story of Richard Simmons, who has become a wealthy man by marketing a weight-loss system: His system involves a calorie-counting gimmick (Deal-a-meal cards, which you have to buy) and an exercise program based on dancing in place (and he sells you the record sets.) His principal capital asset is his skill as a marketer, which is based on his own personality and life history. He is an upbeat, energetic, yak-yak kind of guy, and he tells people his system has worked for him, because he himself was morbidly obese when he was young. And a big part of the hook is that he is empathetic. He knows your struggles and sorrows and sadness if you are fat because, he was not only fat like you, but was massively, dangerously fat.
But suppose he wasn't. Suppose when he was young he was healthy and vigorous, and actually quite strong. So not only has he never applied the system he is selling to himself to lose weight, he is claiming a special bond of sympathy with his customers by falsely claiming to have shared their misery. Doesn't this seem exploitive? Doesn't it seem rather cruel?
And this is why it is so important that he prove he was obese. Which he refuses to do. He can't even produce anyone (a friend or family member) who will vouch for his story that he was fat. Now that's troubling.
Ian C. said on 4/Feb/18
Okay, Frank R, I have heard that story too, but Simmons is the source. Here we have a man who has a vested interest in claiming that he was once morbidly obese, but who cannot supply any independently corroborable evidence that he ever was. Like, none. And I urge you to check out his high school yearbook picture, in which he was clearly of normal, midrange weight.
The thing is, if Simmons long term weight loss story is true, he has learned to do something extremely valuable, and which no one else seems able to do, except with mutilating surgeries. It's as if he had found a cure for pancreatic cancer. What was his secret? Deal-a-meal cards and dancing to fifties rock 'n' roll? Come on.
Frank R said on 27/Jan/18
At his heaviest, Richard Simmons weighed 268 lbs, which at a height of 5’6.5” gave him a BMI of 42, which is considered “extreme obesity.” Once he got to this size, Simmons then starved himself down to a weight of 119 lbs. and ended up in the hospital.
Ian C. said on 30/Jun/16
I have seen that photo, Fruit, and if you showed it to a thousand randomly chosen people who had never seen it and asked them, who is this man who later became famous, it is quite possible that none would guess Simmons. That is, the man in the photo is unidentifiable as Simmons. Also, the picture is in the public domain, and Simmons could have just co-opted it and announced, that was me. If that is not Simmons, the man whose picture it really is lives in Italy, and doesn't know he has been cast as the young Richard Simmons.
But Richard Simmons has no other pictures of himself when he was fat? None at all? How about his high school yearbook photo? His driver's license photo when he was twenty? These, suspiciously, do not seem to exist. There are no pictures of a fat Richard Simmons that were taken in North America. Doesn't that raise little pinging alarms?
These health and diet guys often pull scams. They claim to be ten years older than they are, so that they can then claim that their health regimens are responsible for their young-for-their-age appearances. Stuff like that.
Simmons could be legit. Ricki Lake took off a lot of weight and then kept it off. But Lake can actually prove that she was fat. Simmons just says, trust me, I was fat. And without proof, I don't trust him.
said on 27/Jun/16Click Here
Young Richard Simmons, fat. He was an extra in a Fellini film.
Ian C. said on 25/Jun/16
You are one tactful man, Rob. "It would certainly be very useful to have some evidence to show you at the size you used to be." Simmons' claim that he has lost 150 pounds and then kept it off is so dramatic in its improbability that he must show evidence for it. It's as if Jack LaLanne had said he could do 1000 push-ups and then refused to do those push-ups in front of witnesses.
At the very least, Simmons should be able to refer us for corroboration to people who knew him when he was (supposedly) fat. He won't do even that. Suspiciously his claimed fat period took was when he lived in Italy, making it very difficult to confirm if anyone in North America were to question it.
said on 23/Jun/16
Okay, Rob, I won't call the dignified and self-effacing Mr. Simmons any f-words. But I'm just saying, the man doesn't have a "before" picture. Just the "after" one, from which we are supposed to understand that he has successfully lost and then kept off for decades something like 150 pounds. A feat so rare that, if Simmons has actually done it, may make him unique among all the humans in history.
I never really liked having photos taken, which it might not seem on this site, but I barely have any photos from age 21 to late 20's.
But to help a case like big weight loss, it certainly would be very useful to have some evidence to show you at the size you used to be..
said on 22/Jun/16
I am suspicious of this guy's backstory, and I wonder if anyone else is too. Simmons claims to have been morbidly obese as a young man, and yet there are no pictures of him as a fat guy. So maybe he's a midrange body type who was never all that fat, and therefore he is selling a diet and exercise system with himself as the prime example of its effectiveness, and has been lying about his own weight history during the sales pitch.
Editor Rob: I wouldn't use any term like f***d...I don't know much about his weight history, but I've certainly known at least one 5ft 6 and a half fraudster in life ;)
said on 28/May/15
Video of Richard crying in an elevator as Howard Stern tries to console him: Click Here
Richard appears to be at least a foot shorter than Stern, who claims 6'5 but has always seemed a bit taller. So I'm gonna say Richard is about 5'4.5 at most. Actually, he seems more than a foot shorter than Howard but Howard is nearer the camera so it's hard to tell.
Ian C. said on 14/May/14
Simmons is an interesting case of a fat man who got his weight down and kept it there. It will be interesting to see how long he lives. (He is 66 in 2014.) If cancer doesn't get him, he might well make it to 100.
IR said on 13/Dec/13
5' 6.5" peak, 5' 6" now.
Ajax said on 1/Aug/12
5'6" peak. 5'5" now.
Iceman said on 6/Jun/09
Richard came in to my business about 1990. He is a delightful man and very warm to everyone he meets. When he left he extended his hand and thanked me for letting him in my business. ( I"m a jewler.)
I think Richard is more like 5'4"
Stretch said on 16/Nov/07
I hadn't thought Richard Simmons was still doing his exercise shtick until he was aboard my Delta flight from LAX to Tampa. He is indeed a tiny person on the order of 5'6" but what is so remarkable are his pipe stem legs, the seeming lack of muscle tone despite all those decades of exercise, and the spray-on top cover to help mask the large bald spot behind the frontal transplants. His attire still heavily favors shorts and baggy red t-shirts with outdated "tennie-pumpers" and high white socks.
By the way, he speaks as he does on TV with all the machismo of a marshmallow but the flight attendants and elderly grandmothers on the flight just loved him.
Mr. Awesome said on 13/Oct/05
Rob, I've been waiting for you to put this guy up, because he is a ridiculous character and I have met him. A few years back, I spotted him at the Philadelphia International Airport. He was wearing his usual brightly colored spandex. What I found hilarious was that he was greeting every person as he walked by them as if he was some kind of superstar celeb!...looks like this guy has an ego to match his flamboyant personality. He was creating a huge scene everywhere he went, and I approached him, he greeted me as well. I'm a fraction under 5'8'', and Simmons was a fair bit shorter than me. I would lean more toward 5'5.5''-5'6'' max for him, however 5'6.5'' does seem very close...closer than alot of other heights on this site.
EJ said on 6/Oct/05
Wasn't he once listed as 5'4"? I thought that was his height
DP said on 6/Oct/05
I highly doubt anyone, including Richard, would dispute he's 5'6.5". While some celebrities are fixated on making themselves taller than they are, height doesn't seem to be of any concern for Simmons. This may explain the lack of comments.
Can you imagine Richard Simmons doing his exercise routine with elevator shoes? It would be comical to vision.
Issheuhboy said on 5/Oct/05
Didn't he used to do some sort of exercise regime involving dance combined thing with swearing he was heterosexual?