Tito Ortiz reveals his involvement and passion for bodybuilding, how it’s poised for a big comeback, and makes his pick for greatest bodybuilder of all time.

While Tito Ortiz is first and foremost a top tier MMA fighter, he has a deep respect, passion, and involvement with the sport of bodybuilding. Bodybuilding was the initial foundation that led Ortiz towards MMA in the first place – though he didn’t even know it was called bodybuilding at the time. He just wanted to get big. And he still holds a fire in his heart for the athletes in bodybuilding who keep pursuing that dream. So what does he think of the current state of the sport? In our latest GI Exclusive interview, Tito Ortiz explains why he thinks bodybuilding is going to make a big comeback and also makes his pick on who is the greatest bodybuilder in history.

Tito Ortiz might not hold a mass monster physique, but his love and passion for getting big has been with him since he was a teenage. It’s what ultimately led him towards mixed martial arts – a path that would take him towards being one of the top fighters in MMA. Even though his life became about MMA, he never left bodybuilding behind. Ortiz currently works with a consulting firm for bodybuilding where he helps young bodybuilders learn how to market themselves. An important part of any sport to bring more eyeballs on the competitions and thus bring more mainstream attention (and cash) to an athlete or league.

Tito Ortiz is a man who keeps watch on the bodybuilding world just as much as he focuses on his MMA career. Given that level of passion for bodybuilding, what does he think of the current state of the sport? Many have expressed that the quality of physiques is going downhill compared to decades past. Does Ortiz agree? He couldn’t think that it’s farther from the truth and he points more towards statistics to prove his point.

Tito Ortiz actually believes that bodybuilding is in the process of making a comeback (which of course implies that he at least thinks at some point it went downhill). He points towards how the Olympia and many other major competitions grow in size every year. Perhaps people verbally complain about the physiques being lower quality – but the attendance seems to argue the opposite. Or perhaps, that the change is minuscule compared to how many people find the sport as whole entertaining to watch.

Perhaps the fans arguing for a chance is a part of the beginning for some sort of comeback. With the introduction of the Classic Physique division a few years ago and its continued success – we might just be too close to the action to realize a long term progression that signals bodybuilding will be bigger than ever in the coming decade.

We decided to end off our conversation with Tito Ortiz about bodybuilding by rewinding and looking to the past. Who was the greatest bodybuilder in the history of the sport? Tito Ortiz jumps right over usual picks such as Ronnie Coleman or Lee Haney – and goes for the old school original choice. Ortiz thinks Arnold Schwarzenegger is the greatest of all time. This is when you consider the big picture of everything he accomplished. He is arguable the only bonafide bodybuilding mainstream celebrity. That kind of success legitimized the sport and put it into the spotlight. And to Ortiz, that makes him the greatest of all time.

You can watch Tito Ortiz’s full comments on bodybuilding in or latest GI Exclusive interview segment above.