Dave Bautista Reflects On Troubled Childhood Past With Dan Solomon: “Bodybuilding Saved My Life”

Dave And Dan

The multi-talented Dave Bautista has dominated a number of different career paths while maintaining an incredible physique. In a recent sit-down with Mr. Olympia President Dan Solomon, Bautista explains how bodybuilding saved his life.

Despite a troubled childhood, Dave reached the top of the mountain in various facets of life. One such feat was accomplished in the world of wrestling where he held the title of heavyweight champion longer than anyone else. Bautista worked with the WWE for almost ten years and quickly made a name for himself in Hollywood courtesy of his electric personality and massive physique. After losing to Triple H at Wrestlemania 35, Bautista decided it was time to retire from pro wrestling in 2019 and exclusively act. 

Dave has been featured in numerous Hollywood films, and most notably played Drax the Destroyer in 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy. In addition, Bautista played roles in Dune, Apple’s See and Army of the Dead. Bautista has emerged as a bona fide star in the movie industry but admits that his path to success was marred with obstacles, especially during his troubled childhood past.

Dave Bautista Uses Gym to Channel Anger & Aggression

In a recent YouTube video featuring Mr. Olympia President Dan Solomon, Bautista explains how bodybuilding saved his life despite never reaching Pro status. 

“I don’t take this lightly when I say this but bodybuilding saved my life. I was a really fu***ed up kid. I was in a lot of trouble, getting in the worst kind of trouble and hanging out with the worst kinds of people. I just didn’t have anywhere to focus and channel all my anger and aggression. And when I found a gym, it just became therapeutic for me.” Dave Bautista said.

With his athletic roots embedded in wrestling, the Marvel superstar utilized his prior experience to build a physique that Hollywood went crazy over.

“So that’s what I did. I dove into it when I was a junior in high school. I loved wrestling, I really loved training. So I started training for years and then when I got out of high school, all I wanted to do was be a bodybuilder. For years and years and years I just paused that [because] I didn’t have what it took to be a professional bodybuilder. But I loved training so much that I turned it into professional wrestling. Dave continued. So I went back to my athletic roots and wrestling roots and started my body from what I had from bodybuilding and my athletic ability from wrestling and turned that into a career. Which led into film. That’s where it all started for me.”

According to Dave, training sessions at the gym are therapeutic for him. He’s not the only former WWE star that equates gym training to effective therapy. Fitness sensation, actor, and former Pro wrestling standout Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has echoed in the past that his training sessions in the gym are therapeutic. Similar to The Rock, Bautista took full advantage of his athletic ability from wrestling and transformed it into a successful acting career. 

Watch the full video with Dan Solomon and Dave Bautista below. 

RELATED: David Bautista Shares His Diet and Training Routine, Plans To Go Vegan

Dave has stepped away from the sports entertainment sector but is lauded for his monstrous physique in the acting industry at 53 years old. Despite trudging through a troubled childhood, Bautista explained to Dan Solomon that bodybuilding was a therapeutic venture that saved his life. 


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