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Martin Lidberg the World Champion in Wrestling, Winner of Let’s Dance, and Participant in Eurovision Contest and TV programs.

Diana Kicia and Martin Lidberg

The interview for Designer Magazine Stockholm with Martin Lidberg the World Champion in Wrestling, Co-Author of Brottar Bröder Fight for Life book, Co-Owner of Gritnest Performance Center, Winner of Let’s Dance, and Participant in Eurovision Contest and TV programs.

Could you please present yourself shortly Martin?  

Martin Lidberg, I am European Champion and World Champion in wrestling. I have been also dancing. I have proved that we wrestlers can also learn to dance and won Let’s Dance program with Cecilia Ehrling. I was also in England and participated in the Eurovision Dance Contest. The purpose was that all winners from Let’s dance programs in the world would meet there but Sweden misunderstood that so when we came there so it was real dancers European Champions, World Champions, so only we from Sweden and one Polish couple who were from Let’s Dance. The rest were professional dancers.

Eurovision Contest with Cecilia Ehrling in UK. Photo Ilpo MustoShutterstock, Martin’s private gallery

When the idea about Gritnest start and what Gritnest mean? 

Martin with Sophie Wachtmeister and Katarina Waldenström coowners of Gritnest Performance Center. Martin’s private gallery

I have always had a dream to open a performance center where we can provide sportsmen the most of what they need physical training, mental coaching, nutritional analyzes, diet. If someone is injured or has a strain symptom. So Gritnest is a place where sportsmen can get support in almost everything around their investment.

“GRIT because it is the grit that needs to be taught, a dedicated endurance, and NEST because we are a free zone, the net next to that players take their breath in, are inspired by, and develop on.”

Is this the first place in Sweden that is created in this way?

I think that we are the first place in Sweden which work in this way. We use to say that we are a smaller variant of Bosön which is the Swedish Sports Confederation’s Development Center. Bosön is big and supported by more people here at Gritnest we are a smaller team where we cooperate with expertise within different areas, so we have a lot of expertise in-house. 

What kind of services your performance center provides? 

The physical training, tests like f. ex BodPod (measuring body composition), mental coaching, diet, nutritional analyzes.

Who should apply to your performance center? From which sport-disciplines you already support and you can support? 

Martin with Mikaela Lauren Swedish professional boxer at Performiq, support other athletes to find a work 2018. Photo Martin’s private gallery

We are here for almost all disciplines individual sportsmen like wrestlers, dancers, tennis, but also sports team like football, basket, handball.

Do you also cooperate with different confederations like the f. ex national sports federation?

That’s right. We have cooperation with different confederations, for instance, performance psychologists and sports psychologists who help our active sportsmen. 

You have written a book Brottar Bröder “Wrestling Brothers” Fight for life with your brother Jimmy Lindberg who is an Olympic champion in Greco Roman wrestling, about your both carrier and private life and challenges, can you tell us about that?

We have grown up in a family where the father was game addicted. So situations could change dramatically sometimes we had money and sometimes could we barely pay our bills. It became insecurity. Later when I was older so our father’s addiction has been escalated. It was threats and debts from several people which impacted our lives. We became involved in the process of addiction. We have written about our history which we hold secret about for all these years, but also how it impacted us. By this story, we want to inspire other people that everything is possible, and one can achieve goals despite different backgrounds and challenges.

Martin World Champion in Wrestling, France 2005 Photo by AFP getty images, Martin’s private gallery
The best Swedish wrestling club Spårvägen with Polish trainer Ryszard Swierad. Photo Martin’s private gallery

Did you get any support from the sport as teenagers under these difficult situations?

The sport was very important for us. It was our sanctuary. There we felt strong, we had our other families, we could forget this hard time we experienced at home, we could live it behind. There were positive energy and joy. It was very important to keep the balance in our lives.

You plan to produce a movie based on your book which is now in Swedish, will you translate it into English both the book and the movie?

BrottarBröder book. Martins private gallery

Yes, we plan the movie Brottar Bröder, we have involved directors and actors. We plan to translate our book into English as we got many questions about that and to release the movie in English as well.

We know that besides the local trainers you had also developed your career with the international trainers, who helped you most?

Yes, I had many trainers in my career. I had one trainer from Hungary who means a lot to me and who laid the foundation for my technique, he trained me since I was fifteen. I had also Ryszard Świerad from Poland a fantastic trainer with eyes for details so one could achieve the world’s best results which we did. He also means a lot to me.

You have used research in your career by implementing a new machine in your training created by Johnny Nilsson?

Yes, we had researchers like Johnny Nilsson, Alexander Ovendal there we integrated research in our training with different equipment. One machine to build press skill which is very important in wrestling, another machine was for lifting to become strong to build overcapacity skill which became one of my victory weapon which contributed to my success. 

If you wish to know more about Martin, you can visit his page

Stockholm, 2021-02-24

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