T Nation

Matt Dimel of Westside


#1

I know he died over 20 years ago and this is probably a long shot, but does anyone have any info/pics/video of this guy lifting? I know he was one of the founding members of Westside and apparently according to Louie he was one of the strongest men he had ever seen. For those who don’t know he set a world record in the squat at 1,010 lbs in the '80’s (Westside’s first WR). Aside from Dimel Deadlifts there seems to be very little info on him to be found. Anyone have any info or better yet have competed or trained with him back in the day? This is the only pic of him to be found online.


#2

I am also interested in this!!!


#3

Anyone on these forums lifting in his day?


#4

Hi,

I’m on the west coast but during the early 90’s Matt was coaching me, I was in the same weight class competing in USPF. If you’re interested I may be able to locate my training logs. Matt was a great human being, I greatly appreciated his willingness to help me. Feel free to email me.


#5

Thanks i would love that. I can’t see you e-mail address on your user page though?


#6

My name is Philip Brown from little town in east Texas and I meet Matt when I was 15 back in 1987. Matt was in wheel chair cause it was right after he blew his knees out while giving strength seminar to Pittsburg Steelers I think. I have the video of it. Anyway, I met him through John inzer cause John had hired him to train him cause Matt had lost everything. My parents hired him to train me. Amazing coach motivator and good guy, 8 month’s later I won teenage nationals in Houston. I have lots of pics of Matt some from Longview news journal where they did story on me and him. Lots of stories, I was teenager but met him in low part of life but watched him Proove everyone wrong. He was told might never walk again well he walked in door at nationals. The man made me champion with a rigid workout. I miss him


#7

@pb8892 that is an amazing story. I’m sure others would love to hear it. Like I said Matt is the forgotten legend of our sport and since he unfortunately passed long before the internet, there is very little information on him out there. Care to share any of the pictures or stories?


#8

Give me few days and I’ll dig out all my pic and stuff about him. But one of his training exercises that stood out to me and comes to mind as soon as I hear his name. Matt was an intence a d highly motivational person. He always drilled in my head to have nothing but the weight on my mind while I was under it but of the very first things he taught me was proper technique and we started on squats first. He me go over to mirror on wall a d stand facing mirror and stand in position like I was fixing to squat and put my toes touching the wall. Basically I’m kissin mirror and he said now squat to below parallel but don’t let my knees touch mirror. Well I did and well fell down he said keep doing it till you can Donegal squat without loading balance and falling back and said he was going home and to call him when I could do it and we would atart training again. I was like fuck you do it and he could barely walk at time but walked straight to mirror squared Down and up in like two seconds and turned to me and said the fucking trainer call me when you can do what I said. Well was there two full days before I called. He came back said show me I did and said good now we can work with wieghts. I can still do it until this day. Another quick story about him not related to lifting. When we went to teenage national in Houston my parents let him drive my moms car down there and was me him and his girl friend in 76 Lincoln town car it was big a fuck cruise ship. Anyway we just got to Houston and stopped at gas station and some guy came flying through parking lot on ten speed bike and we ate dash trying to miss him. We we got to pump and when we got out they dude said hey fat add learn to drive. I was like.“oh shit” matt looked at me said come on and started walking to store and right before we went in Matt walked over to his bike grabbed his front tire and squeezed it and it popped like a gun shot and then did same to back tire and then walked to door and we went in and as we walked in he said that as whole going to be walking rest of day. I’ll never forgot that in 10 seconds he popped both tires just squeezing them. I still laugh today when I think about it. Well I get my album out and then I’ll share all I have on him. I was lucky to be trained from begi no g with two world record holders. John inzer and matt dimel who in hell ever gets that chance at 15. I DID


#9

Him and my friend Anthony Clark were neck and neck in the squat back then. I dont like to watch injuries but thier is the one where is trying like a double with 1000 , and the bar slips down back and he blows out both knees. I cant remember where i saw it but he handed weight very explosively probably would have got two. Back then texas was the shit , Anthony Clark, matt dimel, Steve Goggins, john inzer, kotcha doonkeen, and countless others, i wish there were you tube back then, i remember spotting AC bench 495 x20 reverse grip nobody believe me raw. A 1000 squat times two would have put matt at 1050 ish.


#10

Awesome stories man thanks for sharing with us. A buddy of mine who has been friends with Louie Simmons for 20+ years has also told me some crazy ones, but I don’t want to repeat them because they are second hand.

Curious, what did your training with him look like? Did he have you box squatting and using max-effort and speed days a la the early Westside concepts?


#12

Hi Philip, I’m the producer of the new Westside vs the World documentary on Westside Barbell. We are trying to find footage and pictures of Matt Dimel for the film. If you are able to find any of the above pictures or video we would love to put them in the film! Please contact us at producer@westsidevstheworld.com