In Bodybuilding, judges look for the "Total Package". A balance of size, symmetry, and muscularity.
There are 12 mandatory poses in Bodybuilding. Each pose allows the judges to see all angles of the competitors body. Competitors will also perform a 30 second mandatory routine comprised of their best poses to. Depending on the show, competitors will perform a non-judged 60 second routine to music of their choosing in the evening. This allows competitors to express their physique in a way they most desire.
The Front Relaxed pose is the first pose you do on stage. It will be the pose you stand in when you're on the sidelines. Feet are usually kept angled out driving your feet in the ground. Knees slightly bent, flexing your quads as best as you can. Chest is pushed out with lats open and flared out. Arms are kept relaxed, hanging off the lats.
Quarter Turn Facing Left
Quarter Turn Facing Left is exactly like Quarter Turn Facing Right. You'll just be facing the opposite direction. Rotating through the rib cage while keeping your hips sideways. Quads and Glutes flexed, keeping your Abs and Obliques tightened.
Quarter Turn Facing Right
You're next pose is a quarter turn to the right. The Judges will be looking at a side profile of your physique. This pose can be hit in many different ways, the decision on which way would come down to your flexibility and structure. The key is to twist your body through the rib cage while keeping your back expanded to appear more broad at the shoulders and tight at the waist. Quads locked out and flexed along with the glutes.
Front Double Bicep
This is one of the most important
bodybuilding poses. This pose is designed to show off your arms and the shape of your physique. Out of all 12 poses, this one exposes the waist the most. Shoulder mobility is crucial to execute this pose properly. External rotation in the shoulder allows you to fully expand your lats, giving a better X-frame look to your body.
The Side Tricep pose is performed with your legs similar to the Side Chest, arm closest to the judges by your side, and hands clasped together. Because your mid-section is completely visible in this pose, it's important to keep abs as tight as possible while performing it. If you have trouble reaching your hands together, bend the rear elbow to allow more reach.
The Rear Relaxed pose is very similar to the Front Relaxed pose, only facing the opposite direction. Feet in similar position, flexing the Hamstrings and Glutes. To properly do so, you must attempt to pull your heels upward while keeping the feet planted to the floor. Tighten Glutes while keeping your pelvis back and tilted up. Expand back and lean backwards through your mid-back.
Front Lat Spread
The Front Lat Spread is designed to highlight shoulder and lat width. Shoulder mobility is very crucial on this pose. Without the ability to keep your shoulders down and rotated back, you cannot fully expand your lats. Hands should be placed firmly above your hips and chest inflated upwards.
The Most Muscular pose is meant to show off size, muscularity and conditioning to its peak. There's many different Most Muscular poses that competitors can use, although the most infamous is the Crab Pose. Quads either sqiuared or extended, crunching abs down while expanding lats and contracting Chest, Shoulders and Arms.
Rear Lat Spread
The Rear Lat Spread is similar to the Front Lat Spread, except facing the opposite direction. Judges will be looking for width and thickness along width striations in the Glutes and Hamstrings. To properly execute this pose, you'll lean back slightly more than you would on your Front Lat Spread.
Rear Double Bicep
This pose is also one of the most important and toughest to execute. You must have good flexibility in your back and shoulders. Judges will look for good muscular separation within the back, glutes and hamstrings. To fully expand the back, you'll need to rotate the shoulders externally and push your shoulder blades apart.
The side chest gives the judges a view from the side. Judges will look for full hamstring and quad development. A thick chest and full arms. One foot is spiked sideways and against the other. It's important to keep your shoulders down and open toward the judges to give a broad appearance, while keeping everything from the waist down turned sideways.
The Abdominal Thigh not only shows off your abdomen and quads, but also your Lat width and V-Taper. Hands are behind the head, driving your shoulder blades forward. Most competitors crunch abs down but some will perform a vacuum to give an appearance of a smaller waist. The quads can either be squared or one extended.