In the 1990s, while Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls captivated the team sports world with a dominant six NBA championships in eight years, Dorian Yates was simultaneously writing chapter after chapter of his own dynasty. From 1992-1997, the English bodybuilder captured six consecutive Mr. Olympia titles. To establish his royalty, Yates notably overcame legends like four-time Arnold Classic winner Ken “Flex” Wheeler (1993, 1997-1998, 2000), 1985 Mr. Universe Lee Labrada, and even perhaps the eventual greatest competitor in the sport’s history in eight-time Mr. Olympia (1998-2005) Ronnie Coleman.
Years after Yates last trained to have the world’s best physique on a stage, it looks like he’s staying in tip-top shape. On Jan. 10, 2023, Yates posted a picture to his Instagram profile where he has his arms outstretched and neck craned upward as a small waterfall from Tijuca National Park in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, drenches his body. It’s unclear when Yates precisely captured the image. Nonetheless, his current physique — especially for a man who turned 60 in April of 2022 — is something to behold.
Aside from showcasing his physique, Yates partly uses the photo in the “world’s largest urban forest” as a symbolic message of positivity and keeping a clean slate, with eyes forward. It’s a potentially relevant note to boost for others starting fresh in the new year, particularly for someone like Yates, who has roughly 1.4 million followers on his Instagram.
“Wash away all fear and negativity,” Yates wrote. “Feeling gratitude is the ultimate state of receivership.”
After his prolific Olympia run from 1992-1997, Yates would formally step away from the sport of bodybuilding and begin a well-earned retirement in his mid-30s. In November 2022, the legend posted on Instagram and discussed how motivated he was to become one of the greatest bodybuilders of his career as a focused mission. At the same time, Yates alluded to a lifestyle where he didn’t have to push himself at the expense of his physical, mental, and emotional health. He is now actively involved in the nutritional supplement business, most notably forming the company DY Nutrition in 2011, which releases supplements and occasional training guidance videos created by Yates.
The legendary athlete is married to Gal Ferreira Yates, another experienced physique athlete as the 2007 South American champion and 2007 Figure Brazilian winner. The fitness couple primarily resides in Spain, though Yates’ appearance in Rio de Janeiro would suggest they spend a considerable amount of time in his wife’s native Brazil, as well.
With his place in bodybuilding history secure, the world appears to be Yates’ oyster. He can make of it what he pleases. That he continues to be passionately involved in strength and fitness, and is in a position where he can reflect on his past, is a fitting testament to his personal growth in retirement.
Featured image: @thedorianyates on Instagram