Four years ago, four South African bodybuilding and sports enthusiasts collaborated to make the Arnold Sports Festival a reality in Africa under the theme “My Sport, My Passion”. It has since evolved into “There is something for everyone”

In partnership with the Gauteng provincial government and SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee, City of Joburg, Crawford College and Gentle Giant Promotions, Arnold Classic Africa affords athletes the opportunity to compete in an international competition, against participants from all continents, in Africa.

Like its global counterparts, the African rendition embraces numerous sporting codes and promotes these through demonstrations, contests, record attempts and sports celebrities over three days each May.

Meet the organiser - Wayne Price

How did you get involved?

I was attending an event in the US when I heard Arnold said he wanted to expand his fitness crusade to all continents. I contacted Bob Lorimer, now president of Arnold Global International, and my journey of a lifetime began.

What has been your favourite thing about the journey?

The opportunity we are creating for participants and people and exposing children to different sport and activities. The opportunity to develop sport and get people active.

How do you source the sporting codes that compete?

Our commitment from the beginning was to work with the official structures in the country. Working with structures with the same objectives of development, opportunity and to be competitive on a national and international platform, makes it easier. Because sporting codes have experienced success, they are back every year bigger and stronger and new sports contact us to be part of the event.

The tournament has a big community outreach element to it. Tell us more about this.

Every sporting code has the same mandate, to develop future champions. Something for everyone, it’s a family weekend with “come and try” programmes that encourages everyone to participate.

What role does Arnold play?

His fitness crusade to get people active and participate in something, even if it is not sport. He supports and attends each event all over the world showing his commitment to the Arnold Global crusade.

What can people look forward to this year?

An expansion of venues, linked with free bus routes. We have partnered with the SA Hall of Fame where globally recognised sporting heroes will be honoured. We will be having a special beach party. The Expo element of this year’s instalment will be a lot bigger.

The Saturday Star