The death of personal trainer and bodybuilder Justyn Vicky (34), linked to lifting weights at The Paradise Bali Gym in Sanur on Saturday, 15 July 2023, is now under investigation by Bali Police.
Vicky suffered severe damage to his neck and spinal column while trying to “squat press” 210 kilograms. Emergency surgery performed shortly after the mishap at a local hospital failed to save the young athlete’s life.
Justyn Vicky, originally from Jember, East Java, and also known as Herman Fausi, revealed via postings on social media that he worked as a professional bodybuilder, personal trainer, and nutrition consultant.
As reported by the State News Agency Antara and Balipost.com, from the South Denpasar Police Precinct, Inspector Guruh Firmansyah confirmed that police are investigating Vick’s cause of death. The mortal remains of Vicky, following the dictates of the Islamic faith, were buried within one day of his death.
Firmansyah said that police have thus far interviewed three witnesses during their ongoing investigation. Those questioned by police were from the management and staff of The Paradise Gym. The Police Inspector declined to discuss the man’s death in detail or if there were elements of criminal intent or negligence in the fatality. Adding: “Any proof of homicide remains unknown at this time. Once the investigative process is over, we’ll explain. The case is still under investigation.”
The video recently shown widely online on Balidiscovery.com shows Vicky collapsing and falling forward while attempting a 210 kg squat press, accompanied by a safety spotter. The weights on a barbell rolled forward over the man’s neck and head, apparently causing fatal injuries to the neck and spinal column.
The video shows severe twitching of Vicky’s leg muscles (fasciculation) while commencing the lift, a symptom that some fitness experts say shows Vicky was over-stressing, ignoring his body’s signal to abort the lift. Also called into question was the role of a single spotter standing so closely to the lifter’s back, possibly impeding Vicky’s ability to “bail backward” by releasing the weights backward.
Others have questioned how a professional trainer could have avoided such a tragic, preventable circumstance by observing proper exercise standards. (See accompanying video by Jason Blahah).