Roger Bannister

Photograph of Roger Bannister. 1954.

Englishman Roger Bannister (b. 1929) broke the four-minute mile barrier on May 6, 1954, in a dual meet in Oxford.  A student at Oxford and St. Mary’s Hospital Medical School, Bannister disproved the myth that it was physically impossible for a man to run a mile in less than four minutes.  Bannister is said to have achieved his speed through scientific methods and rigorous research into the mechanics of running.  He later became a neurologist and was knighted by the British government.