Netflix shares heartbreaking story of ‘greatest ever’ bodybuilder who can now barely walk

Ronnie “The King” Coleman held the Mr Olympia title for eight years in a row from 1998 but now is hardly able to walk unaided

Former Mr Olympia winner Ronnie Coleman

Image: Reuters)

The story of the “greatest ever” bodybuilder whose strength “wasn’t human” has been making waves on Netflix.

Ronnie “The King” Coleman was classed as the person who redefined the sport as he became a fitness icon, but his obsession and the surgeries that followed have now left him in crippling pain and in a wheelchair.

However, despite the gruelling career leaving him barely able to walk, Ronnie tells a Netflix documentary how he has no regrets.

Previously weighing 21st, Ronnie held the Mr Olympia title for eight years in a row from 1998 and his strength “wasn’t human,” according to fellow champ Kevin Levrone.

He said: “You don’t have a chance of looking like him. It’s a gift from God. It’s a gift of genetics.”

But from the huge heights, now comes the heavy lows as Ronnie explained on Netflix’s Ronnie Coleman: The King how he may never be able to walk unaided again.

Ronnie was Mr Olympia for eight years in a row

Ronnie has had to have a number of operations

The documentary shows a sad scene in which the former Mr Olympia struggles to follow his three- and four-year-old children around the house while on crutches and out of breath.

He admits his issues are the result of a number of surgeries on his back and hips, with doctors saying it’s also because of the degenerative wear and tear from his years of intense training.

In another scene, Ronnie tells the camera: “I just get up on a morning, and you know, takes a minute for me to get going.

“I just got to get used to it.”

And his close pal and gym owner Brian Dobson admitted he shed tears after seeing his “supernatural” friend using a walker.

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Ronnie was born in Louisiana in 1964 and gained an accountancy degree in 1984.

He went on to become a police officer in Texas, during which time he joined a gym and participated in the Mr Texas competition.

He had refused to let previous back issues hold him back from his goal of becoming a world champion and later admitted he had won many off his accolades while battling with a herniated disc.

His surgeries have now left him with nerve damage which leads to numbness in his legs.

Ronnie has also required an op on his back after four screws broke from a previous surgery and his bones shattered in the process.

Ronnie can now barely walk after $2m of surgeries



Discussing his recovery, he said: “I’ve been in pain for so long now I’m just used to it. I take the pills too, helps a little bit.”

Out of 10, he confessed the pain level is “usually a nine or a 10”.

He continued: “When I do appearances my pain level goes up to 12 or 13. Some was unbearable.

“If I’m in a whole lot of pain I just sit when I do appearances and people take pictures. For the most part I always try to stand up.”

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