BASSETERRE, St. Kitts – COLLIN LAZARUS, a local bodybuilder of Guyanese descent, is proposing that the sports discipline is an excellent alternative to crime, violence and deviant behaviour but it has to be properly developed within the Federation in order for its effects to be felt.
Lazarus, who is trained and managed by Mark Whetton, began bodybuilding in 2000 and six months after he placed second in his first competition. He told SKNVibes that was the motivating factor for him to continue with the sport.
The 30-year-old also informed that he began training at a time when many young people were becoming involved in deviant behaviour.
“My brother used to go to the gym and he took me with him and then we met with a guy and that is how it got started. My first competition was at the Fort Thomas Hotel and that was just six months after I began bodybuilding. I came second, so that really encouraged me.”
Since then Lazarus’ discipline and training have won him a number of competitions and have also resulted in him ranking highly in others.
As popular as football, cricket and other similar sports are, Lazarus expressed that not everyone is made to engage in those disciplines and that because of the high level of discipline required for bodybuilding, it could be a suitable and positive alternative to crime and violence.
“It is a very good sport and at that time people were getting themselves involved in crime and deviant behaviour and that sort of thing, so I decided that I am going to do something positive so I can be a role model for a lot of people. Everybody cannot get into football and cricket, so there needs to be other areas. Bodybuilding is a dying sport and we need to rebuild.
“I would really like to see the sport introduced in schools. I would also like to see a local organization governing the bodybuilding sport so that it could function properly and advance this cause.”
Lazarus suggested that bodybuilding is also the perfect sport to boost the Federation’s sport-tourism product. He reiterated that success in these areas would only be realized if the bodybuilding governing body is thriving and if the government provides assistance and support to those involved in the sport.
Somewhere in the Federation, Lazarus explained, is the Kim Collins of bodybuilding but that potential could only be unlocked if conditions are conducive.