January 15, 2015

The Difference in Female Bodybuilding, Figure Competitions, Bikini Contests, and Women's Physique


If you are new to the sport of figure competitions and women's physique contests you may have seen those glamorous figure models on the cover of magazines and on websites.

If you ever had the desire or goal to look like one of these figure models and sport the look of fabulous and sexy muscle, then here are a few quick and easy tips and guidelines to help you decide on your new fitness journey.

Female Bodybuilding - The whole women's fitness movement began with female bodybuilding contests, the first legit one starting in 1978. From then on the women became more and more competitive, working harder to gain more muscle and decrease body fat. Female bodybuilders had perfected the sport by the late 1990's and competition was so great that only the best of the best could survive on stage with a chance of going pro.

Figure Competitions - The popular figure competition is a spawn off of female bodybuilding. It was introduced in 2001 to allow women to compete who didn't want to obtain a great amount of muscle. Figure competitions opened the door so that almost any woman can compete with a chance at placing. However, as the years passed, the figure competitors, too, became more competitive, getting more and more muscular and defined. This division also became somewhat secluded where only the best of the best could place well and become pro.

Bikini Contests - As the figure competitions grew in popularity, so did the competitors muscle, which opened a door to another new division to allows more women to compete on stage without having to build muscle. This new category is the bikini contest. The bikini competitors don't need to display any muscle or definition. They simply have to look good in a bikini and pose according to the guidelines.

Women's Physique Contest - The women's physique contest was introduced in 2010, another new division for women. Basically, the women's physique contest is a lighter version of female bodybuilding. While the women are allowed to have muscle, NPC guidelines state that they can't have striated in muscle detail. Also, there is no lat spread, front and back biceps poses are executed with open hands, and feet must be placed to the side on the front and back poses rather than flat-footed. Also, the side chest pose is executed with arms extended.

To decide with fitness category you would like to compete in it is a good idea to read more on each and attend a competition so you can see the classes and how the women look on stage.

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