The man they call ‘Big Ramy’ is undoubtedly the largest bodybuilder on the Olympia stage at the moment, but has he finally met his match in terms of sheer mass and intimidation? Those who have heard of the man they call ‘The Big Rock’ think so. He is France's answer to the ‘Beast from the East’, introducing… Morgan Aste!
The shock factor
The bodybuilding legend that is Arnold Schwarzenegger recently said how he doesn’t think the modern day bodybuilder is inspirational, basically insinuating that they are too big and freakish. He gives praise to physiques such as Frank ‘The Chemist’ Zane, and doesn’t particularly like the way the modern day bodybuilders look. However, even Arnold will admit that the muscle bound freaks that step on stage today deliver a LOT of shock factor! Few people can argue with the impressive mass that the likes of Mamdouh ‘Big Ramy’ Elssbiay and now, Morgan ‘The Big Rock’ Aste packs. It is the sheer stir that massive physiques bring to the stage, that prove there is still a place for those mutant like, muscle clad men and women in the bodybuilding industry. Any man that can stand next to ‘Big Ramy’ and not look miniature is impressive, and it seems that Morgan Aste might be the first person to manage this very tough feat.
Pound for pound match
Pound for pound, ‘Big Ramy’ and ‘The Big Rock’ balance each other out… in fact, if you were to place them on some balancing scales, ‘Big Ramy’ would lose out!
Contest Weight= 286lbs
The Big Rock
Contest Weight= 297lbs
Aste is a big man, and he back this size up with considerable strength too! When not competing, he weighs in at…wait for it… 352lbs, that’s 160kg or 25 stones to those that prefer metric, and this extra size helps him shift some serious weight in strong man competitions. Aste was determined to show the world that he wasn’t just about muscle, so at the age of 20 he turned to strongman which saw him go on to achieve the French record on the standing log press (170kg), managed to lift a 170kg Atlas stone (those are awkward at the best of time for those that haven’t tried it), and pulled a 13 ton truck for more than 20 metres. Having established himself as the strongest man in France, Aste decided he would make the move back to bodybuilding, during which time he figured he chop and change between the two for no other reason than, well, because he can.
Aste’s passion for lifting heavy things is probably the reason he hasn’t secured his pro bodybuilding card yet, it is notoriously difficult chopping and changing from one discipline to the next, and excelling at both (Johnny Jackson was one of a handful who managed this). At 31 he has since decided that bodybuilding is what he wants to focus his efforts on, so from here he aims to take the US bodybuilding scene by storm, achieve his bodybuilding card, compete in the Mr Olympia, and show ‘Big Ramy’ who’s boss!
Does he have it in the locker? Time will tell!
Barroso, M, (2015). Flex Magazine. The Big Rock.