Luvo Manyonga

Luvo Manyonga: Childhood, Drug Addiction & Net Worth

Anyone can learn how to rise through the dark times of life from Luvo Manyonga. His story and struggles can make anyone teary-eyed.

From poverty to having an absent father and being a victim of drug abuse, he has been through everything.

However, he has never let tough times hold him back.

Luvo Manyonga is a South African track and field athlete who specializes in Long Jump. This athlete from a rural village in South Africa has also made a name in the Olympics.

Luvo Manyonga
Luvo Manyonga performed at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

If you know Luvo, you must be a big fan of him and want to know about him on a personal level. Even if you had only heard his name, his story must have made you curious about him.

Thus, if you want to know this star athlete up close and personally, you have come to the right article. Stay with us until the end of this article.

Let us start with some quick facts about Luvo Manyonga.

Quick Facts

Here are some quick facts about him.

Full Name Luvo Manyonga
Birth Date January 8, 1991
Birth Place Mbekweni, Paarl, South Africa
Residence Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape, South Africa
Religion Christianity
Nationality South African
Ethnicity Black
Hobbies Traveling, Eating
Food Habit Non-vegetarian
Education Desmond Mpilo Tutu Senior Secondary School
Zodiac Sign Capricorn
Father’s Name John Manyonga
Mother’s Name Joyce Manyonga
Age 33 years old
Height 6 ft 2 inches/ 1.89 m/ 189 cm
Weight 82 kg/ 181 pounds
Favorite Food Sushi, Sea Food
Eye Color Dark Brown
Hair Color Bald
Body type Lean, Tall, Athletic
Profession Track and Field Athlete
Associated Teams South Africa
Individual Awards South African Sports Star of the Year
Active Years
2009 to Present
Siblings 2: Older brother and sister
Net Worth 5 million dollars
Social Media Instagram, TwitterFacebook
Merch Signed Photo
Last Update April, 2024

Luvo Manyonga: Height, Weight, and Body Measurements

Manyonga has a tall and lean stature. He measures 6 ft 2 inches tall (1.89 meters) and weighs 82 kg (181 pounds).

Moreover, his tall and lanky body helps him set records in the long jump events.

His body type is lean and athletic, thanks to hours spent in practice. Likewise, he has strong, sculpted arms and a chiseled torso with defined abs.

He also has long muscular legs due to continuous running in the field, gym, and a healthy diet. Likewise, Manyonga’s shoe size is 13.

Luvo Manyonga: Early Life and Education


Luvo Manyonga attended a local school in Mbekweni, Desmond Mpilo Tutu Senior Secondary School. While he was in school, he was bullied.

He has completed higher secondary level education and did not attend college after that.

After all, he was very interested in athletics than a college education.


As stated earlier, Manyonga was not privileged enough to have a good childhood. His parents could not afford proper nutrition and housing.

His father was a fork-lift driver and was almost completely absent in his life. Likewise, his mother, a domestic helper, raised Manyonga and his siblings all on her own.

His mother tried to give him and his siblings the best life she could, but it was not enough. They were being brought up in a poverty-stricken dysfunctional family.

Likewise, Luvo always felt his father’s absence. However, he also credits his father for who he is now.

Manyonga mentions that no matter how tough times were, his mother never let them sleep hungry.

He also remembers getting only 20 cents for lunch at school every day. Likewise, he did not have anything to do after school. Thus, he got into sports.

The long jump was an easy option as it did not require any special equipment. Thus, Luvo and his friends in the neighborhood started challenging one another.

One day, a local coach, Mario Smith, spotted Luvo and was determined to make him a world-class athlete. And the rest is history.

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Who are Luvo Manyonga’s Parents and Siblings?

Luvo’s parents were manual workers. He was born on January 8, 1991, in Mbekweni, Paarl, South Africa.

His father was a driver, and his mother was a domestic cleaner.

Luvo’s father’s name is John Manyonga, and his mother’s name is Joyce Manyonga. John hardly visited his family, while Joyce was the breadwinner of the family.

Joyce loved and trusted Luvo so much, that she was devasted when Luvo was addicted to Meth, but she knew Luvo would beat his addiction.

Luvo Manyonga
                                        Family First: Luvo Manyonga with his parents and sister.

She also remembers not being able to afford things for Luvo and that she felt guilty about it. However, she supported him as much as she could.

Luvo also has two siblings, an elder sister, and an elder brother. However, their names are unknown, and they don’t like much publicity.

Luvo Manyonga’s Present Life

Currently, Luv lives a happy, healthy, and wealthy life in Port Elizabeth, a place that’s 702.3 kilometers east of Mbekweni.

Luvo has also been clean for a while now. He owns an amazing house and cars now, but he has not forgotten his roots.

Likewise, he has learned from his past mistakes and leads a very healthy lifestyle now. He was previously arrested for day drinking but now has completely stopped.

He also does not do parties or drink anymore. However, Luvo likes getting tattoos and has a huge ‘Luvo’ tattoo on his arm.

Luvo currently is not in a romantic relationship. Moreover, he has not opened up about his past girlfriends either, but he had a few flings whatsoever once he was found taking drugs in a woman’s car.

Luvo Manyonga: Career

Early Career

Manyonga started his career in 2009 and performed well at the 2009 African Junior Athletics Championships. The championship happened in Mauritius, and Luvo won a bronze medal.

For the medal, he jumped 7.49 m (24 ft 6 inches). Likewise, he ended the year with a long jump best of 7.65 m (25 ft 1 inch).

He got the recognition he deserved when he jumped an impressive 8.19 m (26 ft 10 inches) and won at the Weltklasse in Biberach in Germany. The jump was considered of the top ten jumps by an under-20 athlete.

Senior Championships

In 2011, he started taking part in senior games. He got a “top 15 in the world” rank when he jumped his personal best of 8.26 m (27 ft 1 inch).

He also represented South Africa at the 2011 World Championships in Athletics and ranked 5th in the competition. For this, he jumped 8.04 m (26 ft 4 inches) and also reached the finals.

Likewise, he appeared in the All-Africa Games 2011 and won the gold medal. Luvo opened his 2012 season with an 8-meter jump.

However, upon meth addiction and losing his close friend and mentor, Mario Smith, Luvo stopped playing for a few years.

He only returned to training in June 2015.

Back to track

Luvo missed four outdoor seasons in 2012. He was only confident in competing in March 2016 after training for almost a year.

His training seemed fruitful as he set his personal best of 8.30 m (27 ft 2 inches) in Pretoria.

Likewise, he won his first senior medal in almost five years at the 2016 African Championships in Athletics in Durban.

He jumped a distance of 8.23 m (27 ft). However, this jump was assisted by the wind.

He then got into the 2016 Rio Olympics and secured the top 10 jumpers of all-time rank. Likewise, he won a silver medal at the Olympics.

He then won the gold at the 2017 World Championships in London and jumped 8.48 meters.

Likewise, Luvo secured gold at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, jumping a record-breaking 8.41 meters in the final.

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Luvo Manyonga: Drug Addiction and Anti-Doping Test Failure

Manyonga was a drug abuser at a young age.

However, after 2012, his family and other relatives started to depend on Luvo for money. Thus, Luvo fell into debt. This caused him frustration and stress; therefore, he relapsed into drugs once again.

His coach Mario Smith financially supported him, but Manyonga was into tik, a local variant of crystal methamphetamine commonly used in his village.

This drug does not enhance performance but is recreational. However, this drug caused him to give a positive doping test at a national series meet.

Thus, he was admitted to a rehabilitation center. After this, he was suspended for 18 months.

However, he was able to beat addiction and fully healed by 2014. He planned to participate in the 2014 Commonwealth games but was taken aback when he lost his coach Smith in a car accident.

Luvo Manyonga: Net Worth

Luvo Manyonga’s net worth is $5 million.

Coming from a family who did not have enough food to eat the next day, it is pretty impressive that Manyonga is worth millions now.

Likewise, his net worth comes from endorsements, salary, and the money he makes after winning a major championship.

As he is a successful athlete, big brands like Nike endorse Luvo.

Likewise, Luvo has won several awards that also contribute to his net worth. Luvo also won a VW Polo Vivo after being named ‘Sports Star of the Year.’

Luvo Manyonga
Lavish lifestyle: In his free time, Luvo Manyonga loves traveling to exotic destinations.

Luvo loves traveling to exotic places, and beaches and eating at expensive and lavish restaurants. He also wears diamond ear studs and expensive designers like Gucci.

However, he is not flashy and understands the value of money.

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Luvo Manyonga: Social Media

Luvo loves spending time by the beach and on the tracks, which is evident on his social media.

On Instagram, Luvo has 22.7 thousand followers.

Likewise, Luvo joined Twitter in August 2016 and has over 7.5 thousand followers.

He also has an official Facebook account in which he has over 9 thousand followers.

Moreover, he has his official website:

Luvo Manyonga: Latest News

On the 23rd of December 2020, Luvo Manyonga was banned by the Disciplinary Tribunal for four years.

After he failed to report his whereabouts along with his second violation of WorldAthletic’s Anti-Doping Rules, Manyonga was banned from partaking in any matches for the next four years from December 2020.

Manyonga has a history of drug addiction which he successfully, overcame in 2016. However, since he failed to show up for drug tests three times in a row in 2020, the committee issued a four-year ban on him.


Why is Luvo Manyonga famous?

Luvo Manyonga is famous for being the Olympic silver medal winner. He is also one of the best athletes in the world.

Is Luvo Manyonga injured?

No, he is not injured currently. However, Luvo made headlines when he suffered from a soft tissue injury in his left ankle in 2019.


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