Athletes train to develop all body parts and muscles to maximum size but in balance and harmony. There should be no “weak parts” or underdeveloped muscles. Moreover, they should follow a special pre-competition training program, to decrease the bodyfat level as low as possible and remove the underskin water to show the quality of muscles: density, separation and definition. Who can display more muscle details will score higher at the contest. General view of the physique, which should be proportionally built will also be judged.
These qualities are displayed during two physique assessment rounds when competitors do 7 compulsory exercises during comparisons of 3 to 5 athletes requested by the judges. Athletes perform barefoot, in posing trunks.
There is a routine round when athletes can show their physique during 60-second free posing routine performed to the music of their choice. It is an attractive, artistic presentation, including compulsory and non-compulsory poses and other type of movements. There are three rounds. In each round each panel judge must put the competitors in order, giving them individual places from the first to the last.
Bikini fitness was officially recognized as a new discipline by the IFBB in 2010 for women who have good overall body development and shape, but are not excessively muscular nor lean. Bikini fitness has proved extremely popular worldwide because of the accepted mainstream fit look for women and the right fit looking package that appeals to men. Competition includes front and back pose including a comparison round and a model walk.
Judges should assess for the “total package” starting with the whole physique, good hair, facial beauty and tight skin tone. A good overall body will have a symmetrically developed firm appearance without striations and muscle separation. Athlete presentation and stage presence must also be assessed from the moment she walks onstage until the moment she walks offstage. An emphasis on a healthy and fit physique is an attractively presented “Total Package”.
Bodyfitness has been implemented by the IFBB in 2002 to give a chance to compete for wide group of shapely women without the routine rounds, just the physique ones. This formula has proved to be useful and the number of participating competitors increases each year; however it is still discussed how to create them the possibility to show their figure in motion. Currently, there are two rounds of quarter turns, but in different attires. In Round 1 all competitors must wear a black bikini and black classic stiletto shoes. In Round 2, the final round, they change the attire to the bikini of their own choice and classic stiletto pump of any color.
In all rounds judges should assess the overall athletic appearance of the physique, taking into account symmetrically developed figure, muscle tone and shape with a small amount of body fat, as well as the hair and facial beauty and individual style of presentation, including personal confidence, poise and grace. This sport discipline is widely open for all well-shaped women working out in the fitness centers and following the healthy sport diet. And they take the advantage of it! Like in fitness, three subscores from all rounds are added to reach the final total and places. There are four body height categories: 158 cm, 163 cm, 168 cm and over 168 cm.
In 2012 the Men’s Physique category was officially launched as a category in the IFBB.
It proves to be a very popular category and within a short period of time, the IFBB has increased the classes in the Men’s Physique from 2 (two)to 4 (four) classes.
This category is for men who do weight training, keep fit and eat a healthy balanced diet, but who prefer to develop a less muscular, yet athletic and aesthetically pleasing physique. They are fit looking contestants who display proper shape and symmetry combined with some muscularity and good overall condition. The athletes should have stage presence and poise and their personality and ability to present themselves onstage with confidence, should be visible.