9 Video Posing Guides!

Learn about posing the best way possible, watch a video and learn! Mark Tilden is one of the best posers in the state and will help you win your next competition!

This article and information you are about to read is long overdue. I've been bodybuilding for 10 years and have just completed my fifteenth show (on Sept. 15, 2001). I'll talk more about that competition in another article.

But, the fact of the matter is that some bodybuilders could really enhance their physiques by presenting it with grace and style. I'm certainly not a huge guy, by any means. I really don't have any freaky body parts either. But, through the years, I have taken pride in presenting what God has given me.

Excellence In Execution: Perfecting The Pose Excellence In Execution: Perfecting The Pose.
In bodybuilding competition, posing ability can often be the difference between winning or losing a closely fought battle. Learn the mandatory poses and how to perform them!
[ Click here to learn more. ]

Posing is a vital part of bodybuilding and is becoming more emphasized in night routines with a new sanction called WFNA (World Federation of Natural Athletes). With that in mind, let's begin with the symmetry round.

The Symmetry Round

When filed on stage with a weight class, each bodybuilder will face the judges in what is called a relaxed position. Very deceiving term! You are not relaxed at all! Heels are approximately 2-3 inches apart with toes facing slightly out. Knees have a little bend in them bringing out the sweeps in the quadriceps.

The abdominal wall is breathing comfortably while the chest is standing tall. To enhance the V-taper, the latissimus dorsi's should be flared.

The hands should be clenched into a fist with the delts, biceps, and triceps tight. There should be a slight bend in the elbows to highlight the whole symmetrical package.

Posing From A Judge's Perspective Posing From A Judge's Perspective.
Have you ever given much thought to the judging process at competitions? Have you wondered about what a judge experiences as s/he attempts to score your class? Learn what they are looking for...
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From here you will be asked to take a quarter turn to your right. With one smooth motion, you lift your right leg first, followed by the entire left side of the body, being displayed to the judges. The only real differences between the "relaxed position" and the profile poses are that your upstage arm is very tight - showing off the triceps, and the downstage arm is pushing the chest over to reveal the upper body thickness.

To create an illusion of thickness with the legs, bring the downstage foot up about 4 inches and push that hamstring out with the other inner thigh. Now that the quarter turns are done, be prepared to flex through eight mandatory poses. Let's start with the pose most likely to be asked first.

The Eight Mandatory Poses

     1. Front Double Biceps Pose

    Heels of the feet almost touching, toes pointed slightly out (forming the letter V) slight bend in the knees really cranking out the quadriceps muscles. Take a deep breath to expand the chest up and bring out the lats of the back.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Front Double Biceps Pose.

Front Double Biceps Video

Windows Media (2.7 MB)
MP4 (3.9 MB)

    To finish the pose, have the elbows slightly up flexing the arms with the thumbs tucked in a tight fist. "Don't forget to smile with confidence."

     2. Front Lat Spread Pose

    The legs are positioned the same as the front double bicep. The important thing to remember during this pose is to keep the chest cavity up and bring the lats out. The anterior delts should be a little forward and the thumb and fingers placed into each side of the pelvic bone. Keep the triceps flexed to show more depth and hardness in the arms.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Front Lat Spread Pose.

Front Lat Spread Video

Windows Media (2.2 MB)
MP4 (4.6 MB)

     3. Side Chest Pose

    Some judges will ask to see both sides so be ready. The first move you want to make, to hit the pose just right, is to take a quarter turn to your right or left and plant your downstage calf. The toes of that calf your posing should be right in the middle of your back foot.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Side Chest Pose.

Side Chest Video

Windows Media (2.2 MB)
MP4 (4.6 MB)

    Just like in the quarter turns, push that hamstring over to emphasize the legs. The downstage hand should be palm up and the other hand placed on the top. Make sure you lock those hands together, keep the chest cavity way up and flex the upstage pec over and bring the downstage arm (the arm closest to the judges) to a 90 degree angle, flexing the bicep and the tricep.

     4. Side Tricep Pose

    Again, the legs are positioned together flexing the downstage calf. The downstage arm is brought around to the side while the other arm comes around to the back to be locked with the fingers. Take a deep breath while locking that elbow, then really crank down the shoulder and squeeze the triceps right up against the lat to show as much thickness as possible.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Side Tricep Pose.

Side Tricep Video

Windows Media (2.2 MB)
MP4 (4.6 MB)

     5. Abdominal And Thigh Pose

    Choose your thickest and most ripped quadriceps and calf. Place it straight out in front of you. Flex it hard while you put both arms up and over your head. Hopefully your diet has taken care of that last bit of body fat so your abdominals look like a washboard.

    Click Image To Enlarge.
    Abdominal And Thigh Pose.

    Abdominal And Thigh Video

    Windows Media (1.4 MB)
    MP4 (3 MB)

    VIEW THE VIDEO - Choose Your Player/Speed:

    Window Media 56k - Window Media DSL - Internet Explorer.
    RealPlayer 56k - RealPlayer DSL - Must have RealPlayer.

     6. Rear Double Bicep Pose

    Obviously facing your back to the judges, take your freakiest calf and take a half step back with it. Turn that knee out to show a great symmetrical line. Take both arms straight up in front of you and slowly bring the elbows down until they are about ear level.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Rear Double Bicep Pose.

Rear Double Bicep Video

Windows Media (2.8 MB)
MP4 (5.7 MB)

    Remember to put your thumb inside your fingers. Flex the biceps hard and flex the posterior delts slightly towards the judges. If you keep your chest up during this pose, it will help to bring out the detail in the lower back.

     7. Rear Lat Spread Pose

    The legs and calves are positioned the same. The judges usually like to see the other calf as well, so practice both of these rear poses with each calf back. With a fluent motion, bring the arms back closely to each side until the upper back is extremely tight.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Rear Lat Spread Pose.

Rear Lat Spread Video

Windows Media (2.6 MB)
MP4 (5.4 MB)

    Then place your thumbs and fingers into your sides and draw the lats way out. Judges are looking for width during this pose, so again keep the chest up and practice getting that back wide.

     8. Most Muscular Pose

    The grand daddy of them all. This pose can be done a few different ways and your own Personal touch can be applied. One thing to remember for the drug free natural bodybuilders is to keep the pose very tight and compact. I have seen a lot of guys try and spread their legs and limbs every which way to look big and only end up looking awkward.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Most Muscular Pose.

Most Muscular Video

Windows Media (4.3 MB)
MP4 (8.9 MB)

    Pick your best leg and pose it out in front of you. One thing I failed to mention during the abdominal/thigh is to keep the back leg flexed as well. Same rule applies during this pose. Bend the your upper torso slightly over your legs to show the delts and traps.

    Personally, I cross my wrist over one another, showing the chest, biceps and triceps which gives me the leverage I need to display as much muscle as possible.

Bonus Feature!

     9. My Favorite Non-Mandatory Pose

Click Image To Enlarge.
My Favorite Non-Mandatory Pose.

Non-Mandatory Pose Video

Windows Media (1 MB)
MP4 (2 MB)