Fitness trainer and martial artist turns his struggles into inspiration

Posted at 1:11 PM, Feb 01, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-01 13:16:13-05

At 6’4” and 240 pounds he may seem intimidating, but Dewayne Riggins was the bullied kid and high school dropout no one believed in. “I’d get pushed into the urinals, I’d get money taken away, and I was afraid. I was afraid to fight back. I didn’t feel good about myself,” said Riggins.

The pressure set in and Dewayne decided to drop out of high school and move from his home state of Georgia, to New Jersey. It was there where he feel onto the wrong crowd. By the time he was 24 years old, Dewayne was unemployed, homeless and suicidal. “That day I remember sitting in a car. My mother had passed. I came close. I walked up on the train tracks. The train was coming and I was ready to end it,” he said.

It was then Dewayne said he heard a voice call out to him , saying there was another way…and there was.

Dewayne learned to use his story to inspire others. He is now a certified personal trainer and martial arts expert who teaches punch classes at POE in Short Hills, New Jersey, and trains NFL athletes like Tim Tebow, Bart Scott, and Antonio Cromartie. He also spends his time as a motivational speaker and anti-bullying activist.