Flex Wheeler: The Sultan of Symmetry

  • NAME: Kenneth “Flex” Wheeler
  • DATE OF BIRTH: August 23, 1965
  • WEIGHT: 225 – 235lbs (102.1 – 106.6kg)
  • HEIGHT: 5’7” (170cm)
  • ARMS: 24”
  • CHEST: 56”
  • NATIONALITY: American
  • PROFESSION: Bodybuilder
  • ALIAS: Flex the Sultan of Symmetry
  • ERA: 1960, 1970, 1980

Biography of Flex Wheeler

“He who conquers others is strong; He who conquers himself is MIGHTY”

Let's hear the story of a bodybuilder who pushed his body to the edge of an explosion; the bodybuilding masterpiece "Flex Wheeler." His body has become simply the stuff dreams are made of. Flex wheeler has literally flexed his body muscles to the extreme maximum, driven by incredible determination and consistency.

Born into poverty and a life of abuse, Kenneth "Flex" Wheeler has overcome numerous obstacles and setbacks to become one of the best bodybuilders of the 1990s. Leaving bodybuilding behind to pursue his first love, martial arts, Flex wheeler still hopes to compete and one day appears in Hollywood films. It is clear to see, that flex has remained strong and dedicated to a life of positive progression and endless fitness endeavors despite his life's struggles.

Early Life of Flex Wheeler

Flex Wheeler was born on August 23, 1965, in the Fresno, California area. Owen Webster Wheeler is his father's name, and Gloria Wheeler is his mother's. He has two siblings, Darnell Wheeler is his older brother, and Sharalene Wheeler is his younger sister.

Complicated path of a bullied boy; Flex wheeler

Despite his success, Flex Wheeler's path to the top was extremely difficult. He grew up in a time when poverty was prevalent throughout the United States. His family was no different. During his school days, he was diagnosed with dyslexia, which caused him to face ridicule from his classmates and even considered suicide.

“Everybody goes through problems in life. Everybody’s had their challenges. My challenges are no different than anyone else,” Wheeler said. I’m definitely not Superman. That goes to Shaq (O’Neal). But what I’ve really tried to learn through this process is accepting what I can’t change and change what I can’t accept, and just let that be that.” – Flex Wheeler

Sports were one area where Flex wheeler excelled. Flex Wheeler began his career training as a teenager, initially for martial arts. He was able to do the splits and other amazing feats of flexibility during his martial arts training in his youth. This is where he got the nickname "Flex."

His natural development, on the other hand, convinced him to pursue bodybuilding. Despite this, he has stated that he is a "martial artist first, a bodybuilder second." It also explains his remarkable flexibility in such a large body. Even so, Arnold Schwarzenegger has described him as one of the greatest bodybuilders he has ever seen.

Flex Wheeler; From a Police officer To Bodybuilder

Flex went on to become a police officer as one of his first professional jobs, but his passion for bodybuilding won out.

After a short tenure as a police officer, Flex Wheeler dedicated himself full-time to becoming a professional bodybuilder, earning the moniker "Flex." He first competed in 1983, but it wasn't until 1989 that he took first place at the NPC Mr. California Championships. Since then, he has finished second at Mr. Olympia in 1993, narrowly missing out on a win (something he was to repeat in 1998 and 1999).

Flex made the best IFBB pro debut in bodybuilding history in 1993, winning the Pro Ironman, Arnold Classic, German Grand Prix, French Grand Prix, and finishing second in his first Mr. Olympia.


Flex Wheeler Training

Flex used a lot of hypertrophy and heavy weights with low reps, as do most heavy set bodybuilders. He'd do split routines, german volume training, and progressive overload during his workouts. Flex didn't waste time in the gym when he was the size he was during his competition days. It was either all or nothing.

Car Accident and Car Jacking

Flex was in a serious car accident in 1994 that nearly killed him. It could have led to permanent paralysis.

Flex's luck was running out when he was carjacked in 1997, which ruined his chances of competing in Mr. Olympia that year and that pushed him deeper into depression.

Kidney Disease

This, however, did not discourage Flex Wheeler from returning to bodybuilding. He competed again after being diagnosed with Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis, an aggressive kidney disease.

"They told me I had the most aggressive kidney disease known to man, with no cure." They also told me that my life was in danger and that I would require a kidney transplant."

The condition was hereditary, according to Flex, despite rumors that his use of steroids caused it. Some experts believe his use of steroids aggravated his condition even more.

Flex Wheeler retired from bodybuilding in the early 2000s as a result of this devastating news.

Return To Martial Arts

Flex wheeler returned to his first love, martial arts, after retiring from bodybuilding. Kemp-Kwon-Do, a hybrid of Kempo, Tae Kwon Do, and Aikido, is said to have been his favorite martial art.

Flex received a kidney transplant in 2003 and went on to compete in the 2005 Arnold Classic, where he demonstrated his fighting skills and won. Since his early twenties, he has competed in 70 undefeated fights in his martial arts career.


A Director of Media and Public Relations for a sports and nutrition company

Flex wheeler has since worked as a Director of Media and Public Relations for a sports and nutrition company. He also manages the company’s sponsored athletes and can be found advertising for the company.

Flex Wheeler has stated that he would like to return to bodybuilding if the organization reintroduces the Masters for the Olympia.

“I am hoping they will bring the Masters Olympia back as I am pretty confident I can win this. If not, I am, in effect looking at going back into open competition.”

In terms of martial arts, he says, "I was a martial artist before I became a bodybuilder and no one has really seen me fight before and as you probably know, everyone and their grandmother has a black belt." So I wanted to go out there and prove that I am a seasoned, dedicated martial artist who is no slouch."

One of his greatest ambitions is to break into the acting world and, hopefully, appear on the big screen. His size and well-known name have caught the attention of film producers, and he has received film offers.

It’s clear to see that Flex wheeler’s passion and competitive edge hasn’t left him after so many years. Flex wheeler was born a tough competitor.


Marital Life

Flex Wheeler married his long-term girlfriend Madeline Wheeler in the spring of 1997, and the couple had a son, Darius Wheeler. They are currently living a happy life together.


Steroid Cycle

Much has been said about his steroid abuse leading to his kidney problems, which is a fair criticism; however, all of the pros of that era abused steroids, and not all of them needed a new kidney. Having said that, Flex did use steroids to keep up with its competitors.

We can guess a steroid cycle based on what was available in 2005 when he won the Arnold.

Flex Wheeler Steroid Cycle

  • HGH 12IU's per day
  • Insulin pre-meals (10-20 IUs per day)
  • Trenbolone Enanthate 750mg per week
  • Testosterone Cypionate 1000mg per week
  • Primobolan Enanthate 1250mg per week
  • Anavar 100mg per day
  • Winstrol 100mg per day


Mr. Olympia, like all sporting events that attract colorful characters and foster long-running rivalries and intense competition among high-caliber athletes, has had its share of contentious moments, and Flex Wheeler was no exception.

Flex Wheeler Attacked By Ninjas!

On the eve of the 1997 Mr. Olympia, most expected Flex Wheeler, the reigning Arnold Classic champion, to easily defeat the past-his-prime five-time Olympia champ, Dorian Yates. A belief that was quickly turned on its head 48 hours before the big event when the Sultan of Symmetry Flex Wheeler, with his left forearm and hand bandaged, claimed he had been the victim of a failed carjacking by nunchaku and gun-wielding assailants.

Despite claiming to have defeated his attackers with his formidable martial arts skills, Wheeler, a Tae Kwon Do black belt, admitted to suffering enough injuries to disqualify him from the competition, a story that few believed. It has since been speculated that Wheeler was not in peak form and did not want to withdraw from the 1997 Olympia race due to conditioning issues, thus the elaborately fabricated carjacking story.

 Flex Wheeler is a gifted, powerful, and well-known Bodybuilder. Retired IFBB professional bodybuilder is known for being the best in the history of the sport, having won the Arnold Classic multiple times.

Flex Wheeler has overcome abuse, depression, car accidents, robberies, and kidney failure while continuing to compete in his first love, martial arts.

If we can take one thing away from this story, it's that his determination to focus on the one thing that fulfilled him propelled him from some of his lowest points in life to becoming one of the most successful bodybuilders of all time.

"I want people to know that they can overcome all of these obstacles and achieve greatness instead of becoming a gangster, a loser, or a nobody." If I can do it, believe me, anyone can." Flex Wheeler, Kenneth