I just talked about fitness competitions and how they can be a great and balanced event for women performers, with their focus on movement and athleticism, but now I want to talk about a new-ish addition to the world of bodybuilding competitions: physique competition!

Not just about muscles. Like fitness, physique focuses less on muscles-on-muscles and more on working to create a balanced overall body shape. Think of it like trying to create a body self that is a total package embracing an elegant form and you’ll have an idea of what physique is about.

Board shorts. One of the things that takes some competitors aback is that physique contestants are asked to wear board shorts—which is so very different from the tiny suits that other bodybuilding competitions encourage. The shorts should be just below the navel and just above the knee. Many feel that the reason for the shorts is to again encourage an overall build and not emphasize just one part of the body.

Contests are all about personality. One of the great things about physique contests is how they often focus on a contestant’s personality and stage presence: that the goal is to be poised, fluid, and not overly sexual or provocative. This, again, says it all: that physique is about your body but also who you are as a person!

Like with women’s fitness competitions, men’s physique events are all about balance and even elegance.

Judges won’t be looking for massive muscles, but instead how you and your body work together to be a picture of harmony, health, and beautiful movement!