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World champion bodybuilder shows off science of muscle building

Tuesday 5 December 2017

A WORLD champion bodybuilder who has matched Arnold Schwarzenegger’s record provided a demonstration of the science of muscle building for University of Salford students.

Welsh-born James ‘Flex’ Lewis, who has followed Arnie’s footsteps by winning six consecutive Mr Olympia titles, showed off his ability with a bicep curl exercise before a group of the University’s students studying sports science and a range of other subjects.
The bodybuilder, who originally took up weightlifting to help improve his performance as a rugby player, now lives in Florida and regularly appears on magazine covers and TV shows in the US.
Dr Steve Atkins, Director of Sport, Exercise and Physiotherapy, talked about the science of muscle activation – and described what was happening to Flex’s body while he carried out his exercises at the University’s sports centre.

The academic connected an EMG (electromyography) device to Flex’s bicep, showing in real time the electrical impulses being generated by the bodybuilder’s muscles.
A larger group of staff and students were then able to ask the bodybuilder questions about his about his health and fitness regime, his life growing up in the valleys of South Wales and his career as an entrepreneur and the CEO of several companies in the US.

Flex said: “Manchester has always had a place in my heart and it has been a privilege to visit, particularly after the tragic events of this year.

“I was impressed with the knowledge and enthusiasm of the students and the staff. It was a great event and hopefully they can take something away with them from my life story and career success. If you work hard on anything in life you can achieve your dreams, whatever setbacks you may have. Dream big and believe to achieve has always been my motto.

“I’d like to thank them all for listening and inviting me to such an impressive campus.”
Dr Atkins said: “Flex Lewis is a huge name in the bodybuilding world, and so we couldn’t have asked for a better way of demonstrating the science behind it – and what happens to an athlete’s body when they exercise their muscles.
“He’s an inspirational figure and it was a great opportunity for our students from a huge range of backgrounds to have been able to meet him.”