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CONTESTS IS RIGHT A BODYBUILDER
As you get more and more into the sport of bodybuilding, you may want to consider showing off your hard work by entering into a bodybuilding competition. There are many local gyms that hold contests as well as national competitions that are held on an annual basis.
Before you actually enter a bodybuilding competition, you really need to know what they’re all about in the first place. Take the time to attend a competition before entering and pay close attention to the techniques the exhibitors use and ask questions about what the judges are looking for.
Do not enter a bodybuilding contest just because you’ve lost a bunch of weight. These contests are about great physiques with toned muscles – not about people who’ve lost body fat.
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Your muscles must be well-defined and toned ready for display. Remember early on in the book when we talked about the “Grecian Ideal”? That’s what bodybuilding contests are really about.
Be realistic about your chances the first time out. While it is possible to realize a “Cinderella” story finish, it’s not really probable when you consider that some of the other entrants are very experienced. Tell yourself that you’ll be happy with not being cut from the lineup or taking fifth place, for example, which is a realistic goal for many beginners.
Once you’ve decided on a competition, you need to start planning well ahead of time to become fully prepared for contest day. You need to concentrate on any problem areas you have and work them hard. Keep up with your regular routine, so the muscles that are already toned don’t lose their definition.
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Think about what you will wear during the contest and what songs you will want playing while you are posing. You will also want to start thinking about your posing routine.
We’ll interject a quick note about suits here since it’s not really that complicated choosing what you’re going to wear. You have worked very hard on your body, and in a contest, you will want to show off as much of it as possible. Pick a suit in a color that is complementary and one that is as skimpy as you are comfortable with.
Just don’t over-do it – it’s not about who shows the most skin but who shows the best muscles.
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With music, you will want to choose songs that will activate and excite the crowd. Judges will respond better to you if you have a lot of clapping and cheering going on for you. Your posing style will be dictated by the music, either elegant or aggressive depending on your selection.
Your style of music is important. More on Your mood, the mood of the audience and the judges will be set moment by moment, heavily balance by the competitor’s choices in music.
Clearly defined space in the music for major poses is usually extremely important. Some routines flow perfectly and gracefully through music without accentuating beats, but you can be confident that only a few competitors in a hundred can successfully achieve the beauty and grace of such a performance.
If you don’t have a childhood background in dance or ballet, or you don’t have a nearly perfect body with matching symmetry, try to select music with a pronounced beat where you can clearly put your strongest poses.
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We can’t stress enough that you can have a great physique, but if you don’t know how to show it off, you won’t be doing any good in a contest. Posing is so very important in competition. It gives the judges an idea of what they are looking for in a contestant which is symmetry, muscularity, aesthetics, and proportions.
A good place to start learning about posing is to look through bodybuilding magazines to see how the models are presenting themselves. Try out a few of these poses while looking at yourself in a full-length mirror. What works for one person may not work for you, but it just might!
Think about the beat of your music and then choose poses that go along with that beat. Start out with your most powerful pose and hold it for 3 to 5 full seconds. Make sure that your routine flows smoothly and there is enough time in between poses for a little fun.
What muscles should you be accentuating? The easiest answer is all of them, but you will want to show off certain parts of your body specifically. You need to know your muscles, and we hope by now you do. Here are some areas you will want to focus on:
Front Double Bicep
Arms are out to the sides with biceps flexed and the competitor is facing forward towards the judges and audience.
Front Lat Spread
Hands are located somewhere near the competitor’s waistline and elbows are flared out showing the lats. The competitor is facing forward.
The competitor is turned so judges can see his profile. He has one calf flexed by raising his heel from the ground. Hands are clasped or wrist is grabbed with the back arm coming across the front of the torso somewhere below the pec line.
The forward arm is pulled down and back toward the competitor’s rear. The chest is raised and flexed. The rib cage is usually expanded.
The competitor is in the same basic position as the side chest except his arms are clasped behind him. The forward arm is flexed straight down showing off the triceps. The back arm is stretched across the lower back and its hand is clasped with the forward arm’s hand.
Abdominal and Thigh
The competitor is now facing forward. His arms are tucked behind his head and one leg is placed farther forward than the other and flexed. The competitor is also flexing his abdominal muscles.
Rear Double Bicep
The competitor is facing the rear of the stage away from the judges and audience. Arms are out to the sides and biceps are flexed. One leg is back and that calf is flexed. The back muscles are also flexed.
Rear Lat Spread
The competitor is in the same basic position as the Back Double Biceps except the hands are attached at the waist and the elbows are pulled out and the lats are flared outward.
Most Muscular – the classic “strong man” bodybuilding pose
Typically, judges will call for the competitor’s favorite most muscular pose. At this point, they have the option to hit whichever of the most muscular poses they feel make them look the best.
If you want to come up with some poses of your own, by all means, do so! You know your body best of all and if there are certain muscles you really want to show off – such as your glutes – definitely do it!
When you come up with a posing routine, you should practice so that you know it like the back of your hand. If you hear your music on the radio, you should be doing your routine in your head.
Every chance you get, watch yourself going through the routine and maximizing your muscle tone so that you make an impressive performance.
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Have someone take pictures or video of you and be highly critical of it. You can also have someone else look at it for you and tell you where you can improve and where you are strongest. While you are posing, breathe normally and focus on flexing of the muscles. You want to appear cut and ripped as much as possible.
Quite a bit of time before the competition, you will want to start tanning. Tanned muscles look a lot better and more defined than nontanned muscles. If you don’t want to risk going to a tanning bed, look
at a spray-on tan the day before your competition, but be advised that these types of tanning can have an orange appearance and could detract from the image you are trying to project.
During the competition, there will be a variety of rounds during which you will compete for points. Each contest is different, but most will have the following rounds:
Standing Relaxed Symmetry Round
During this time, the judges are looking for overall body symmetry in the competitors. They are looking for relationships between the muscle groups.
Are they all developed evenly?
Within each specific group, does it flow nicely?
Does the competitor have a symmetrical bone structure? The more evenly developed the competitor is, the higher he or she will be placed.
There is no direct flexing in this round. Competitors are viewed in what is called the Standing Relaxed position. Typically, this consists of the competitor’s heels together, toes pointed out at a forty-five-degree angle, and lats semi-flared.
Every competitor has their own way of standing relaxed, but in reality it is semi-flexed. Every muscle should be tight on stage.
The competitors are viewed from the front, both sides, and the rear.
Comparison or Muscularity Round
This is where the real flexing begins! Competitors are called upon to hit the Mandatory poses in this round. The judges are comparing the level of muscular development and definition each competitor has acquired in relation to the other competitors.
Free Posing Round
The Free Posing Round is where each competitor gets to express their muscularity how they see fit. Usually, this round is accompanied by music.
If there are no restrictions on oiling, you will want to apply a thin coat of baby oil to your body. This can enhance your muscle tone and make you appear more cut. Some avid bodybuilders also advocate using Preparation H or some other type of hemorrhoid cream.
These creams pull water out from under the skin. When a bodybuilder has excess water in the skin, he or she will look smooth and undefined.
Many bodybuilders who have used creatine supplements during their workout routine will lay off about four to six weeks before the competition. Then, three to five days before, they load up again just like when they first started which will make them look fuller.
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On the day before and the day of the competition, do a carb load. Don’t overdo it or you will look smooth, but try having 200 grams the day before and 300 the day of. Know your body and know what makes it look good and what doesn’t.
You should also mentally prepare for competing. Have your mind set on your goal as to why you wanted to enter a competition in the first place. Visualize yourself up on the stage hitting your poses and imagine the audience cheering you on.
Mentally preparation can be just as important as physically preparing when it comes to a successful bodybuilding competition showing. You can find some great support and guidance in a variety of places. Read More …
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