Ronnie Coleman
Source: GETTY IMAGES

Bodybuilding Legend Ronnie Coleman Was Not Sure He'd Be Able to Walk Again

Tatayana Yomary - Author
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Oct. 4 2022, Published 10:54 a.m. ET

The bodybuilding sector of the sports world is serious business. Athletes make it a point to focus on sculpting their bodies to perfection in hopes of winning various competitions. Naturally, it comes with some bodybuilders making life-altering decisions that may be impossible to reverse. Unfortunately, bodybuilding legend Ronnie Coleman knows this all too well.

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Most bodybuilding fans are aware of Ronnie’s feats. Over the years, the 58-year-old was able to win eight consecutive Mr. Olympia titles. And for many aspiring bodybuilders, Ronnie was the standard. However, after a long career and some questionable decisions, it appears that Ronnie is not where he used to be. So, what exactly happened? Here’s everything that we know.

Ronnie Coleman
Source: GETTY IMAGES
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Ronnie Coleman has lost most of his mobility due to multiple surgeries.

According to Muscle & Fitness, Ronnie has lost much of his mobility. It appears that a herniated disk, caused by persistent workouts post-diagnosis and 13 surgeries, is to blame.

“All the hardware kind of interferes with the nerves,” Ronnie told the outlet. “I used to be able to bend over and do all these crazy stretches. I can’t do that any more.”

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Per Mayo Clinic, a herniated disk is described as “a problem with one of the rubbery cushions (disks) that sit between the bones (vertebrae) that stack to make your spine.” The organization shares that herniated disks mostly occur in the lower back, but can also occur in the neck area.

As for the symptoms, many experience numbness, tingling, weakness, arm and leg pain, and even paralysis.

Unfortunately, Ronnie had an intense squatting session in 1996 that caused him to dislocate a disk. However, the athlete decided not to seek medical assistance and continued to train, per Muscle & Fitness. And that decision is kicking him in the butt to this day.

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“There was a loud crunching sound,” Ronnie told the outlet. “I lost a little strength. I heard it, but the athlete in you is like, ‘Let’s go on.'”

After spending multiple hours working out, Ronnie finally decided to get checked out. This eventually led to The 58-year-old putting off surgery until 2007 when he retired. However, after years of sitting on this injury, it’s safe to assume that damage was done.

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Ronnie went on to experience other herniated disks, which caused him to undergo multiple surgeries —13 to be exact — in order to reverse the damage caused to his back and neck. However, the surgeries exacerbated his injuries and caused the athlete to lose most of his mobility.

In fact, Focus News reports that Ronnie shared his belief that he may not be able to ever walk again in 2020.

Ronnie Coleman
Source: GETTY IMAGES
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Where is Ronnie Coleman today?

Obviously, one would think that Ronnie’s bodybuilding days are over. However, Amomama reports that Ronnie is still active in the bodybuilding world.

Ronnie once feared that he’d never walk again, but he's doing that, with assistance, and more. The retired bodybuilder is the owner of a self-titled company that provides apparel and supplements that bodybuilders need to take their training to the next level.

Additionally, Ronnie still works out and shares his journey with fans via his YouTube Channel. Many of Ronnie’s videos consist of him meeting up with fellow athletes to lift along with vlogs about his daily life.

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