Isle veteran bodybuilders’ heavyweight success

Eric and Lynn Dolman.
Eric and Lynn Dolman.

A bodybuilding couple who lived in Crowle for more than 30 years have become champions of the world at the latest heavyweight competition in Finland.

Eric Dolman, 80, and his 67-year-old wife Lynn – who only took up the sport of bodybuilding three years ago – have picked up world championship gongs in their age and weight categories after taking on all-comers.

Veteran competitor, Eric, picked up a bronze medal for the British team in the 75-80kg class, 80- to 85-year-old age group, having previously won the British masters, and his wife Lynn came in a solid first place after sweeping aside the competition in the 62kg, 65-70-year-old age group, after lifting her own body weight for the British team.

Eric said that both he and his wife were “over the moon” at picking up their latest medals, but they had no intention of stopping their pursuit of further trophies.

He said: “I started bodybuilding while I was still living in Crowle – this was right up into the 1990s. I also used to be an entertainer, in fact a singer and I performed in the local Crowle Methodist Church and at the gala in Belton for many years. I was a professional singer for more than 42 years and I was quite well known in Crowle. I used the stage name of Prince. It would be nice if anyone remembers me.”

The bodybuilding duo moved to the Costa Del Sol – Velez in Malaga, Spain, in 1999, where Eric carried on entertaining at local venues including civic halls and theatres, but put the bodybuilding aside.

Before going to Spain, when he was in his 60s, he competed in the British Masters in the 69kg class where he lifted a then record weight of 135kg for his age and class.

That was until the couple moved back to this country in December, 2010. Eric was bitten by the bug once again and three years ago Lynn took up the sport, trained by their son Sam, 34, who Eric had trained to British youth championship success.

Eric, who now lives with his family in Tupton, near Chesterfield, said: “My wife has won a number of trophies since taking up the sport. She has this year alone won the Northern, British, European, and International championships before picking up her latest medal two weeks ago at the world’s in the arctic circle in Finland.

“I have been married to Lynn for 40 years and, until she took up the sport, I never imagined she would go on to such success. She had previously gone along to the gym to keep fit before deciding to take up bodybuilding.”

The couple now have a purpose-built gym in their converted double garage and train most days.

Eric further added: “In the garage we have a set-up of Olympic bars and weights so we can keep up at anytime with our training regime. It is ironic that I trained my son in the art of bodybuilding and he became a junior champion and he then went on to train my wife and she now has a better technique than me and is a world champion.

“I suppose it is because I used to be a power lifter just like my son where the emphasis was on lifting huge weights. I find lifting the weights I lift now far easier, but my technique is not there as much as I would like.”