Big Ramy discusses how bodybuilding is viewed in the middle east and why so many international athletes are coming to Kuwait to train.


Big Ramy’s Olympia win in 2020 was a long time coming after years of hype. He was the shining highlight of a new wave of bodybuilders coming from the middle east. Some even dubbed Kuwait specifically the new Mecca of bodybuilding due to the quality of competitors appearing from that region. But what is the reality of bodybuilding in the middle east? And what is it truly like to train there? In our latest GI Exclusive interview, Big Ramy goes into detail about the culture of bodybuilding in the middle east.

The stunning size and quality of Big Ramy amongst other athletes coming from the middle east started a new wave for the sport. They were so impressive that other international bodybuilders traveled to Kuwait simply to train there and transform their physiques. Brandon Curry was one such athlete. He eventually won the Mr. Olympia in 2019.

Big Ramy has always been the biggest highlight to come out of the middle east region. His massive size shocked fans. It placed Ramy in the pop culture as a man who would undeniably win the Olympia competition. It was only a matter of when. Through ups and downs, Big Ramy finally achieved this goal in 2020.

But beyond the man and his physique, what is it like to actually train and live a life of bodybuilding in the middle east? During our interview with Big Ramy on the set of Generation Iron 2, we asked him to detail his experience bodybuilding in Egypt and Kuwait.

His entire answer could not make it into the final film. With his recent victory, we agreed it was now time to release the unseen and extended footage from his interview. In this clip, Big Ramy goes into detail about the culture and popularity of bodybuilding in the middle east. He also discusses whether or not he represents Egypt as an athlete or simply himself.

Lastly, he also details his opinion as to why bodybuilders in the middle east have suddenly exploded. And why international bodybuilders are moving to Kuwait to transform their physiques.

While bodybuilding is a niche sport in the United States, it has quite a different culture in other countries. The middle east is passionate about the sport of bodybuilding and treats their athletes like superstars on a more mainstream level. You can see proof of that in this recent clip of Big Ramy returning back to Egypt to a roaring crowd after his Olympia 2020 win.

While this interview was years before Big Ramy became champion, he had already made a name for himself as a superstar bodybuilder. This interview was right before his 2017 showdown against Phil Heath. He received second at the Olympia that year.

Though the time might be slightly earlier, Big Ramy’s outlook and dedication to his sport and his country are the same. He reveals a different world of bodybuilding while also acknowledging the challenges he faced in trying to become a top international pro bodybuilder.

It’s a fascinating look into the mind of a now Olympia champion. You can watch Big Ramy’s full comments in our latest GI Exclusive Vault interview segment above. You can also see Big Ramy in Generation Iron 2 – available now on digital. Click here or the banner below to stream or download!

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Derek Dufour
Derek Dufour has been managing all digital operations on the Generation Iron Network for over six years. He currently manages a team of editors, writers, and designers to provide up-to-date content across the GI Network.