Interview with wheelchair bodybuilder Gene Bergeron, by Rich Knapp – the Freak on Wheels.
FoW: Gene can you give us a short background on your life pre-wheelchair?
Gene: I was always into fitness. Loved lifting heavy weights and all sports. I followed my childhood dream and became a Pro Wrestler. It was a wild ride while it lasted.
FoW: I ran across you when I first became a wheelchair bodybuilder and was inspired by you so much. Can you tell us how you came to be in a chair and a bodybuilder?
Gene: I broke my neck in a wrestling match which left me as quadriplegic c5/c6. Maintained my fitness in rehab and was content at the time. In mid 2007 I was contacted and asked to compete in a wheelchair bodybuilding show close to home. With nothing to lose and everything to gain I trained taking 1st in Novice and 2nd in Masters.
FoW: Being a quad WCBBer what has been the hardest thing you had to deal with on the stage?
Gene: The fact that I am a quad mostly. Some poses are difficult due to lack of movement.
FoW: What has been the biggest challenge you had to over come as a WCBBer?
Gene: Myself for the most part. I’m very hard on myself and not afraid to call someone out If I think it’s wrong.
FoW: I know you have done more than one show. How many did you do all together and how did you place?
Gene: I’ve done three shows. All have been the NPC USA Wheelchair BodyBuilding Championships, 2008, 09, 10. Placed 1st Novice/2nd Masters in 08. Placed 3rd in LW/2nd Masters 09. Placed 3rd LW/1st Masters in 10′.
FoW: You are part of the first ever wheelchair bodybuilding team “TEAM WCBBG.” How did you feel when you got the word you were picked to be a team member?
Gene: Very honored! Being part of this team will open many doors for everyone in the sport.
FoW: How do think this team will effect if any the way the sport looks at WCBBers?
Gene: The “TEAM WCBG” will shine and will bring newcomers into the sport. Each member is unique yet unselfish willing to help others.
FoW: Do you think being on the team is a good career move?
Gene: Very much so! Doors have already open for team members.
FoW: What are your future plans?
Gene: To promote the team and sport of WCBB. Hopefully be come a Pro and have others follow in the “TEAM WCBBG”s” path.
FoW: Thank you so much Gene for taking the time for this interview. I hope the best for you in the future. Keep pushing. Freak on Wheels.
Gene: Thank you it was a pleasure. GVD