Strike A Pose!

If you want to succeed in the competitive bodybuilding arena, it is crucial that you spend some of your training time learning how to pose correctly. The judges will rate you according to what they see, so you need to learn how to show off your muscles in the most becoming way possible. Many times, competitions are won or lost not due to actually muscle mass, but due to posing skills. Practice year-round and you will be able to wow the judges.

There are eight poses that are generally used at competitions. Depending on the length of the event and number of competitors, as well as the level of competition, you may be asked to do one or all of these poses. Know the difference and know how to maximize your muscles for each pose so that you look as big as possible without being distorted.

The one pose that you will most definitely need to learn is the quarter turn. This is often used for first evaluations, so not only do you have to be able to do the pose, but you also have to be able to do it well. This will be your first impression on the judges and audience, so you want to look as good as possible. The quarter turn begins with a semi-relaxed head-on pose to the judges. Your arms should hang at your sides, and you can flex, but the key is to look relaxed. Next, turn to face the right. Technically, you should face the right full on, but most bodybuilders twist their upper bodies slightly to show off their chest, abdomen, and shoulder muscles. The key is to do this without looking too distorted. Next, face the back, showing off your rear muscles. This is a good time to flex your calves. Finally, turn to your right one last time, showing off the other side of your body. Again, you may wish to slightly twist your torso. End in the position in which you started. The judges will then dismiss you and it will be the next competitor's turn to do the quarter turn pose.

Other poses that you need to learn include the front and rear double biceps, front and rear lat spreads, side triceps, side chest, and front abdominal and thigh. You may also be asked to give your "most muscular" pose, which is just as the name sounds-the pose which you do best and which shows off the most number of muscles to impress the judges. Your competition may or may not include a free posing round as well, which is a posing routine set to your choice of music. Check your competition's rules before you sign up to see what you need to prepare, and practice your posing year-round to keep yourself in good form.

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