Having won the Mr. Olympia title for eight straight years, Ronnie Coleman is widely recognized as one of the best bodybuilders of all time. The retired pro also once held the record for most wins in the IFBB. However, after pictures of him in a wheelchair spread online, fans were concerned about Ronnie Coleman’s health.
Coleman was born on May 13, 1964, in Monroe, Louisiana and got a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Grambling State University in 1984. Ronnie was a middle linebacker for his college football team GSU Tigers.
He moved to Texas in the hopes of finding a job as an accountant. Sadly young Coleman wasn’t able to get a job in the field and ended up working at Domino’s Pizza to make ends meet. He became a police officer in Arlington, Texas and held that position from 1989 to 2000.
Gustavo Arlotta, a friend and fellow officer, persuaded him to join the MetroFlex gym. He was given a free lifetime gym membership and in return, the owner Brian Dobson would train him for the upcoming Mr. Texas competition.
Coleman went on to win the competition, even beating Dobson. After this, Coleman finished third at the NPC Championships in 1990 but this wasn’t good enough for him.
Ronnie Coleman didn’t win a show until the 1995 Canada Pro Cup, where he defeated Rich Gaspari and Milos Sarcev. His reputation steadily grew and he won his first Mr. Olympia title in 1998 as Dorian Yates had just retired the year before. Coleman dominated the competition from 1998 to 2005 and was finally defeated by Jay Cutler in 2006.
Injuries and Current Condition
Over the years, Ronnie Coleman’s rigorous training schedule has taken a toll on his body. He confessed to working out and winning many contests while battling with a herniated disc, a spinal condition that can lead to severe pain and even paralysis.
If someone has a back condition, they usually seek treatment straight away but not Coleman. He ignored the pain and continued competing at the highest level. Ronnie needed multiple back operations and a few hip surgeries as a result of this.
Nowadays, he has been in and out of the hospital multiple times and his last three surgeries cost him $2 million! Furthermore, Coleman said in June 2020 that he may never be able to walk again. The legendary bodybuilder is now 59 years old and is married to Susan Williamson who takes care of him.
Ronnie isn’t paralyzed but uses crutches and a wheelchair as he lost mobility from undergoing 13 surgeries. In a bid to tackle the pain, he experimented with stem cell therapy and he claims the treatment is working well!