Bodybuilder Joey Swoll slams fitness influencer over viral taunt against disabled student

TikTok fitness superstar Joey Swoll is known for taking a stand against bullies in the fitness community, especially when they target vulnerable people.

In his latest stand against gym bullying and negative behavior in the fitness world, the bodybuilder called out another fitness influencer for shamelessly mocking a disabled student with special needs.

The initial reel, which sparked conversations online, showed the fitness influencer, known as i_am_mighty_fit or mr fitness online, mocking the way the student lifted weights in the gym.

Joey Swoll is known for calling out online bullying and for fostering a more inclusive and supportive online fitness community.

Image credits: joeyswoll

i_am_mighty_fit’s video garnered significant attention, racking up millions of views and likes, but not without consequences. After the reel caught Joey’s attention, the bodybuilder blasted i_am_mighty_fit for hitting on the youngster. He made it abundantly clear that he was deeply disturbed by the insensitivity shown by i_am_mighty_fit.

“2.7 million likes on a video mocking a child with a disability, a very painful disability, for trying to train? And all for what? Some likes and attention on social networks? Really?” Joey said, expressing his disbelief and disappointment.

His criticism highlighted the wider issue of online bullying and the impact it has on people, particularly those with disabilities trying to take part in activities such as exercise.

The student, later identified as Donald, was mocked after a video captured him lifting weights in the gym

Image credits: joeyswoll

Joey said he wanted to “stand up for this kid” and slammed social media users for their vitriol against him.

“Seeing that go viral was really hurtful to him,” Joey said. “They got attacked too. I’m probably going to get attacked for making this video. It’s ok. Bring. But somebody has to stand up for this kid. ‘i_am_mighty_fit’ you have to do better. Don’t go where they don’t ask you. And anyone who liked and supported this video, shame on you.”

Several people, including other fitness influencers, threw their support behind Joey and rallied behind him in their support for the young student.

Below is i_am_mighty_fit mimicking Donald’s style of lifting weights

Image credits: joeyswoll

“Honestly, disabled or not, this kind of teasing is disgusting. This is exactly why so many people dread going to the gym. Because of judgment and ridicule, as well. What a pathetic life you have to live, if you feel the need to make fun of others, just to feel better about yourself,” Zach Coen, another fitness influencer, commented on Joey’s video.

Another influencer with thousands of followers on Instagram commented: “It’s sad that likes, comments, shares and online influence are the new currency that people will do anything for.”

i’m_mighty_fit, or mr fitness, he has about 25.6 thousand people who follow him on Instagram and 287 thousand on TikTok

Image Credits: Pure’Bred Gordon

Joey later posted an update and said he spoke with the student’s classmates, who revealed the student, named Donald, was “really upset” about being the butt of the prank in the video i_am_mighty_fit.

“UPDATE: I spoke with one of the classmates of the young man being mocked in this video. His name is Donald and everyone at his school absolutely loves him. They have all seen the video and are VERY upset,” Joey wrote on social media.

The bodybuilder also revealed that he was considering doing something for the “amazing young man”.

“I have the high school and the principal’s name I will be calling this week to see if we can do anything for this amazing young man. Meanwhile his Instagram is public and his name is ‘dsenez33’ I want everyone to go show him nothing but love and support from our community please,” he added.

Joey uploaded the video below to call out i_am_mighty_fit for his insensitivity

To the dismay of those who threw their support behind the student, i_am_mighty_fit came out after Joey’s video and said his videos were getting more views following the bodybuilder’s rant.

While Joey’s stance against the student’s teasing was meant to emphasize the importance of empathy, inclusion and respect in all spaces, i_am_mighty_fit instead thanked Joey for rewarding him with additional points of view.

“Every action has a reaction. Thanks to Joey and his Swoll patrols, viewers are booming,” i_am_mighty_fit revealed on Instagram.

Joey revealed in an update that the student was very upset about the unnecessary hate the video caused online.

However, Joey’s scolding still served as a reminder to uplift and support rather than degrade and divide. His mention of the account name, ‘dsenez33’, prompted several people to head over to the student’s Instagram page and shower his posts with love.

“Really impressed with your dedication and desire to work in the gym! I’m sure you are an inspiration to many people, wear it with pride.”

“I saw your video. Please don’t let a few evil and clueless people hurt you in any way!! You are an awesome person who deserves to be admired!” said another.

Pi-Sky Coffee, which is listed as a shopping and retail brand, said they were a big fan of the student and offered to augment his training equipment at the gym.

“Hey Donald, we’re a big fan of you and your work ethic! Let us know if we can send you some custom training gear with your name on it. Have a great night champion!” Pi-Sky Coffee said.

Netizens rallied behind Joey to support Donald and take a stand against bullying in the fitness world

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