FITNESS AND FIGURE POSING
There are four poses that must be mastered, the quarter turns. Competitors must present their physiques from all angles – front, right, rear and left. This offers the judges the opportunity to assess and score an athlete’s complete physique. While technically the poses are supposed to be relaxed, they’re anything but. These poses must be practiced, practiced and practiced again long before a competition. This allows competitors to show off their physiques not only in the best possible manner but also under the worst conditions – when they’re hungry, nervous, thirsty, under scrutiny, for an extended period and without being able to see the poses themselves. Many exceptional physiques have been rewarded with poor placement due to poor posing. Every competitor must also master the non-official poses – standing relaxed, transitions and walking.
- These are general guidelines. Find out the specific rules and requirements for your organization.
- If it’s the athlete’s first competition, practice should begin as soon as the contest preparation is begun, 12 to 16 weeks out. Begin with 30 minutes twice a week, and increase the practice time as the competition gets closer.
- Athletes should visit shows to see what they’re in for. Taping the show and talking to the competitors is an excellent strategy.
- Initial posing should be done in front of a mirror, but by four weeks out, competitors must be able to hit poses without looking.
- Get feedback. Athletes should start by looking in the mirror. Then they should get someone to tape them posing. And they should always try to obtain expert feedback.
- Posing should be practiced in the shoes that will be worn during the competition, and on a hard floor.
- Competitors should be working toward being able to hold each pose for two minutes without relaxing.
- Small adjustments should be made in positioning until competitors find what best shows off their own physiques. All athletes should all be trying to emphasize the V-taper by minimizing the lower body, maximizing the shoulders and back, and bringing out the flare in the legs.
- Practice transitions. Turns should be made quickly but without rushing.
Competition Day Tips
- Listen for the judges’ directions. They will tell the athlete when to turn or any adjustments they expect to be made.
- Use suit adhesive. There are products out there specifically to keep a suit in place. Apply it only on the outer edge of the bikini bottom and top. Athletes should apply it only after their last washroom break.
- Have a Vaseline® smile. Under the hot light, an athlete’s mouth becomes dry in seconds, making it difficult to smile. Competitors should spread a little Vaseline® on their teeth and inside their lips before they go onstage.
- Be calm, look happy and never fidget. Competitors should never pick at their suits, lick their lips or fuss with their hair.
- Be confident and connect with the judges and audience. Athletes need to let them know that they look amazing, whether they feel it or not.
- Don’t relax. Even when competitors aren’t at center stage, they should never let everything sag. The judges will notice.