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Latest News

Bodybuilder Jonathan Withers

Jonathan Withers Wins 2020 NPC Nationals Overall Bodybuilding Title

Ever since 1982, the National Physique Committee has held their Nationals bodybuilding contest to determine the best amateur bodybuilder in the country. The first champion to be crowned was Lee Haney, who would go on to win eight straight Mr. Olympia titles over the course of his professional career. Other...

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Top Athletes

Bodybuilding Guides

Biceps Training Commandments

10 Commandments of Biceps Training

There are a ton of different ways to build big, strong biceps, and there's really no one definitive way to do so. In fact, when Broses passed down the 10 Commandments of Biceps Training to all of his fellow lifters...

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Bodybuilding Basics

What is Bodybuilding?

In the sport of bodybuilding, athletes compete to see who has the best physique. They are judged on their muscularity, level of conditioning (or leanness), muscular symmetry, and posing routines. Most of the work is done off stage, as competitors must train hard, eat clean 24/7, and follow a rigid supplement regimen to build a complete body.

There are two major bodybuilding organizations — the IFBB Pro League and the NPC (an amateur league). The NPC, which is where most bodybuilders start, offers eight divisions — three for men and five for women. For the men, they are Men’s Bodybuilding, Men’s Classic Physique, Men’s Physique. The women’s divisions include Women’s Physique, Fitness, Figure, Bikini, and wellness. In the bodybuilding category, there are also specific weight classes. They are:

  • Bantamweight (up to 143.25 pounds)
  • Lightweight (over 143.25 pounds and up to 154.25)
  • Middleweight (over 154.25 pounds and up to 176.25)
  • Light Heavyweight (over 176.25 pounds and up to 198.25)
  • Heavyweight (over 198.25 pounds and up to 225.25)
  • Super Heavyweight (over 225.25 pounds)

A typical bodybuilding show consists of four rounds— the symmetry round, the mandatory posing round, the free posing round, and the posedown. (Note: Each division is judged a little differently.) Here’s a breakdown of each stage.

Athletes will first complete a series of “relaxed” quarter-turns so the judges can compare their symmetry and conditioning. Then, they’ll complete the eight mandatory poses to demonstrate their size. Each athlete will then perform a rehearsed posing routine, about 90 seconds long. Finally, the top three to five competitors in each weight class will compete in a posedown, as the last chance to show the judges their best assets.

The eight mandatory poses include:

  • Front Double Bicep
  • Front Lat Spread
  • Side Chest
  • Side Tricep
  • Rear Double Bicep
  • Rear Lat Spread
  • Abdominals and Thigh
  • Most Muscular (men only)

More in Bodybuilding

Cedric McMillan

Cedric McMillan Withdraws from 2020 Mr. Olympia

2017 Arnold Classic Champion Cedric McMillan has confirmed that he will not be competing in the 2020 Mr. Olympia contest, currently scheduled to take place December 17th through 20th in Las Vegas, Nevada. The US Army veteran made his intentions...

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Akim Williams

Akim Williams Wins 2020 Chicago Pro Bodybuilding Show

The final bodybuilding contest to offer qualification spots to the 2020 Mr. Olympia was this past weekend’s Chicago Pro show. Due to the restrictions in Illinois caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the contest was moved to Atlanta, Georgia, similar to...

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