Contest Prep

Contest Prep: Posing Part 2

Earlier this week I visited my coach for our third posing session together. I am happy to say that it went really well and that my coach mentioned that with each session I am getting better and looking more confident going through each pose. There is still room for improvement, but thankfully at 10 weeks out, there is plenty of time to get it all down to a science.

Posing really is everything when it comes to show day; especially for Bikini competitors; not only are the judges looking at your physique, but they also keep an eye out for poise, confidence and overall presentation. So many times athletes will come into to a show looking fantastic and will be well balanced with curves and muscle definition, but they place poorly because their posing isn’t on point. Many competitors that do especially well either have a dance or sports background, so naturally they are athletic and agile. I however have minimal experience with this; sure I’ve taken ballet classes and I workout often, but I’ve never trained in this way before, which is why I knew I had to start posing as early as possible…I am so glad that I did.

As I mentioned in my earlier post Contest Prep: Posing, we have mandatory poses to go through especially during comparisons (i.e. quarter turns). Each pose faces its own challenges as you need to place your body in a way so that you look well proportioned with an hourglass-type shape, all while maintaining good posture, without overly sticking out your booty, keeping your core pulled in and keeping a big smile on your face without looking as though you are in any pain whatsoever . In reality though your muscles ache, your feet hurt from the heels, you’re dehydrated and standing under big bright lights with your skin the color of mahogany, makeup that would make a drag queen look tame and a really massive hairdo. Up close you look hilarious, but on stage you look stunning.

That being said, since all that effort goes into looking a gorgeous an equal amount of effort has to go into presenting just as well. The areas that I need to work on mostly involve transitioning from one pose to the next. The movement needs to flow so that you don’t end up looking stiff because you’ll ultimately look awkward and uncomfortable. For me, once I’m in the pose it’s perfect, but actually moving from one position to the next still isn’t quite there yet. Thankfully I was able to figure out what I was doing wrong and now I know exactly how to transition. Case in point, when holding front pose and moving into side pose I would move my entire body and shift all of my weight one shot which looked terrible, what I am now doing is just turning my hips around while maintaining the position of my legs and then gliding my left foot to my right aligning both legs and twisting my upper body to get into the side pose. It sounds a little technical and very specific, but it’s had a huge impact on how I present.

What the judges are looking for with my division are broad shoulders, small waist and shapely glutes and hamstrings. I don’t have broad shoulders so in order to create the illusion of this, when moving through each pose I will need to roll my shoulders back halfway and then slightly prop them up giving off a more proportionate look to my physique. In back pose (facing away from the judges) I will need to do the same thing except that I will also need to flare out my lats to make my waist look smaller. Again, it’s all about the illusion of a very specific physique; if you don’t have a particular shape or you just can’t build up more muscle in certain areas, then you position yourself so that you look like you do have it.

Here are some progress pics showing what how my posing has improved from my first session two months ago to now:

June                                        July                                         August

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So as you can, practice definitely makes perfect when it comes to posing. If you are thinking of competing, start posing as early as possible.

Going forward I will be practicing for 15 to 20 minutes each day (up from 10 minutes) and on my weekly active rest day I will practice for at least 30 minutes. This way I will have enough time to go through each movement and getting comfortable just holding each pose since it does involve a lot of balance and flexing.

I plan on meeting with my coach another two times prior to show day to work out any others areas that I may be lacking and to be sure that I am stage ready. All in all it was another great session and just seeing my progress photos is more than enough to keep me going.

Start It, Finish It

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