BODYBUILDING PRE JUDGING
BODYBUILDING CONTEST PHASES:
Bodybuilding contests are divided into two phases, the prejudging and the evening show. The prejudging is all business. It is usually in the morning, this is like a rehearsal of the evening show. It gives the judges an opportunity to evaluate the competitors without the distractions of a large audience.
CHOOSE A WINNER:
As a future competitor you will definitely need to attend the prejudging. In most cases the judges choose the winner in the prejudging. By attending the prejudging you will learn what is expected of the bodybuilders onstage.
The prejudging is divided into several different rounds – symmetry round, compulsory poses, comparisons, and individual posing routines. Men do seven compulsory poses and women do five. Sometimes the individual posing routines are left out of the prejudging and only performed at the evening show. Your posing ability and routine are very important. Posing can make or break your chances of winning the contest.
THE IFBB PRE JUDGING SYSTEM
The prejudging consists of two rounds.
In the first, the bodybuilders assume a “standing relaxed” posture (something like standing at attention, arms at the sides) and are looked at from the front, back and both sides.
In the second, the competitors go through a very specific set of mandatory poses. In both rounds, the bodybuilders are looked at individually and are compared as well, although unlike the NPC system – where the judges can call out any number of competitors in a group – usually only three competitors are brought out for comparison at a time.
But this often doesn’t happen. For example, the “standing relaxed” round is often called the “symmetry round.” This is because, when the bodybuilders are not flexing and posing, and they can’t cover up physique faults by how they hit their poses, the aspects of their physiques that stand out tend to be their overall shape, symmetry and proportion. But the first round is not symmetry round – that is, it is not a round in which the judges are looking at symmetry as if it were a separate and distinct element of the bodybuilding physique. It is a physique round in which every feature of the body that can be observed should be considered.
For example, a judge should not give a high placing to a competitor with an aesthetic shape and good proportions, but who lacks mass or density, is not hard and defined or who is lacking in any other aspect of physical development or conditioning. As with the other rounds, the judges should score the competitors as if this were the entire contest, decided on the basis of what they can see while the competitors are “standing relaxed” who the best bodybuilders on stage are in order of excellence.
The same is true of the second round. The bodybuilders do mandatory poses, flex their muscles, and this tends to show off their muscularity, but it is not “muscularity” round. Of course, when competitors start to pose a physique that seemed relatively unimpressive in round one can seem to come alive, muscles popping out all over. But while this should certainly count in her or his favor, it doesn’t mean a bodybuilder’s other obvious faults or weaknesses should be ignored. Again, the judges are supposed to look at the competitors in this round and ask themselves, “Who would I place first, second and so forth if this round were the entire contest and this was all I was going to see?”
The point of the different rounds is giving the judges as much information as possible on the physiques they are evaluating. You see different things when a competitor is just standing there or when he or she flexes and poses. Someone who doesn’t impress you in one round might well change your mind in another. But the bodybuilding physique must always be looked at as a whole and be judged and evaluated in its entirety in each and every round.