Bodybuilder, teacher of fitness and dance classes, internationally recognized dancer.
Motto: “Look to the light!”
I took the sport like a duck to water. Every sport excited me. I remember sneaking downstairs from bed after midnight to watch the 1972 Olympic Gymnastic Final. Olga Korbut was the hero of the Olympics.
I was barely six years old but already i was so fixated with sport that I was willing to take the risk. Already I had been brought up with Mohamed Ali – the undisputed World Boxing Champion of Champions. He was a people´s champion and won hearts and minds when he was stripped of his title (for not fighting in Vietnam) – only to regain it years laters. His confident, flashy style went against the norms of the time as this was during the time America law segregated )and excluded black peopleú from mainstream society. Yet here was a black champion bragging about his roots, strength and heritage. He became a spokesman for civil rights and “The People´s champion” especially amongst the black community. He also became my champion and I persued every sport open to me with Ali as my role model…
School life was pure joy. The Middle and Brand new Upper School Head wanted to have the best academic results and the best Sport Teams so consequently I left school with top grades and having captained the school team in 5 different sports the County Athletics Club lay open for me. School was not radical, nor liberal. Infact it was quite conservative. We had to wear school uniform at all times. Corporal punishment was abolished when I was 14 years old but it still continued afterwards. Wayward children were swiftly dealt with and “Human Rights” was an odd ball ideas that had nothing to do with school. However the competitive ethos of sport reflects itself in everyday life. Learning to lose with grace and to win with dignity is a subject every athlete has to face over and over again.
Dance was seen as a girlie thing. Boys who participated in “dance things” were seen to have a sexuality issue. But break dancing broke that idea as it became very stylist to break dance and it lifted your street cred. I always liked mime and suddenly break dance allowed men to bop, mime and dance with a lot of gymnastics thrown in. More and more boys participated in disco dance competition, including me. It spiralled on with shows, performances and then working in clubs. It still continues.
I remember meeting a mature woman on a train journey. She sparkled and had just finished her dance classes. She was fresh, fit and so graceful and I admired how a woman in her fifties (so I foolishly thought), looked after herself. I nearly fell off my chair when she announced that she was nearly eighty. If this is what dance can do then it´s a good enough reason no to stop…
When I moved to London to start work as a social worker, it meant the end of competing for my county athletics club. It was simply too far to travel back and forth. So to fill in time and keep fit I joined the gym situated 50 metres from my flat. By pure chance the ex Bodybuilding Champion of Spain met me in the street and became my coach. So I trained 5 times a week and 12 weeks later I stepped out on stage in The prestious Wimbledon Open Bodybuilding Championship. I was shocked when the judges placed me as second. After the shock the next show was 3 months later and a whole new way of life begun.