Israeli bodybuilder Dani Kaganovich, 23, became the first Israeli ever to win the title of Best Overall Body in the NAC International Ms. & Mr. Universe 2015 competition in Hamburg on November 28. He also placed first in the Junior category for the third time.
Kaganovich told Ynet that he was a skinny, insecure teenager until he started working out and paying closer attention to his diet.
“I started training at the age of 16 at home watching videos on YouTube, and read on the Internet how to get stronger to improve my appearance and self-confidence,” said the Beersheva resident. “I saw my muscles respond well, so I signed up for the gym.”
In 2010, weighing in at 74 kilograms (163 pounds) he was crowned Mr. Darom (South) in a NAC bodybuilding contest in the Negev. In November 2011, at 87kg, he won the NAC Mr. Israel contest, and had his first Mr. Universe Junior (age 23 and under) win in 2012.
Kaganovich told Ynet that bodybuilding has changed his life in many ways. He now works professionally as a trainer and nutrition consultant.
“I was a goofball and disorganized. Bodybuilding put structure in my life. I gained order and discipline through this sport. I became another person not only physically, but also in character, and I am pleased with the change,” said Kaganovich, who now weighs 105 kg (231 lbs.) and is 180 centimeters (5’9”) tall.
Several other Israelis from a delegation of 16 earned top-10 rankings in Ms. & Mr. Universe 2015.
Lussi Tichman placed sixth in the over-30 Bikini Shape category; Aline Elkin placed seventh in Bikini Shape; Mikhail Savelyev was in eighth place for Men’s Physique; Oleg Minkovskiy took sixth place in the Body over 40 category; Yonatan Elias placed fourth in Athletics II; Ishay Magzimet placed ninth in Juniors; Alexander Matveev and Alexey Zaydlin placed second and third, respectively, in Men’s Body I; and Renat Pisahov placed ninth in Athletics I.