Remember the child bodybuilder with six pack abs at age of 10? This is how he looks now
Child prodigies have been known to lose their way as they progress into adulthood. Some fall into the rut of the normal life and some are burdened by their own talents and many real and potential prodigies have either left what made them famous or killed themselves. Today we revisit a similar child prodigy who made quite a splash some 20 years ago in US thanks to his unique looks and his body, “little Hercules” Richard Sandrak. Let’s see what he has been upto nowadays and if he still maintains that killer body.
1 Richard Sandrak, the child wonder
Richard was born in 1992 in Ukraine. His father Pavel was a martial arts Champion and his Mother and Lena was an aerobics instructor. The family immigrated to Pennsylvania USA is search of a better life. It was then that Richard barely out of diapers was made to train with his parents. Pavel began training Richard from the age of 3 with light stretching and aerobics and acrobatics regimens.
As he grew, he progressed to light weight training. Richard slowly began to garner attention and when the family shifted to California to get into showbiz, Pavel hired a professional physical trainer Frank Giardina to train Richard and give him a bodybuilding physique.
2 His immense popularity and hard life
The main purpose of getting into showbiz was to make Little Richard the star attraction, after all, who ever heard of a young bodybuilder. By the time he was 8 years old, Richard was pressing 210 lbs with ease. Richard’s popularity soared as his photos hit the internet and people began to marvel at this wonder kid who had a better physique than many bodybuilding veterans.
At the age of 11, he was declared the world’s strongest boy. But all the glam and popularity had a real ugly story backstage. Instead of being able to play with friends and lead a normal child’s life, Richard barely a teen was doing 600 pushups a day and 300 squats including sit-ups. He was soon travelling across the country doing shows and even promoting nutrition products.
3 His father was a hard trainer
Richard was trained hard by his father and trainer. He had to follow a strict dietary regimen and was not allowed to gorge on burgers, pizzas, soft drinks or any of the childhood diet at all. He didn’t have any time to make friends and he never had a normal childhood. In fact, Sandrak even recalled how his father denied him fast food but would eat pizzas in front of him. Richard was instead made to eat only healthy food and vegetables like a whole head of lettuce.
But according to Sandrak “I’ve never been forced to train or do anything against my will”, he said. “My parents used to train all the time and I wanted to join in. It was mostly my choice. It’s just what I grew up doing. I was never forced. It was never an issue.”
4 What is Richard Sandrak doing now?
By the time he was 11, his father became a wanted man when authorities suspected him of criminal activities. Richard and his mother went separate ways when his father was arrested and sent to prison for physically assaulting his mother. He went on to feature in various movies and was also studied by doctors who felt that he was under the effects of testosterone which his mother denied. Richard was then made famous for his major role in a 2009 film titled “little Hercules”
After a few TV shows and small roles, he soon stopped bodybuilding and now at the age of 24, works for Universal Studios as a stuntman. He no longer lifts weights but is still in great shape thanks to running and cardio workouts. “I’m very proud of my past. It’s not something I don’t want people to know, it’s just that I’m not going to be stuck living in it,” he explained.
5 He still works as a stuntman in Hollywood>
Richard Sandrak is still in the entertainment business working happily for Universal as a Hollywood stuntman. He is 5 ft 8 and although fit as a fiddle has stopped weightlifting. Now he leaps off buildings, gets set on fire and performs various stunts for stars. Richard said in an interview “I don’t lift weights anymore. If anything, it just got boring to me,” said Sandrak during his Inside Edition interview.
He feels his job is more satisfying than anything else. Richard has reunited with his physical trainer Giardina and together they still workout and stay fit. On being asked if he regrets anything of his past he said, “I’ve never been forced to train or do anything against my will,’ Sandrak confirms. ‘My parents used to train all the time and I wanted to join in. It was mostly my choice. It’s just what I grew up doing. I was never forced. It was never an issue.” Sandrak speaks about his experience in the video below.