Want to compete?
This is where you start.
The United States Bodybuilding Federation membership covers amateurs and professionals.
Memberships are categorized as follows:
- Men and Women’s Bodybuilding
- Men and Women’s Physique
Athletes can compete in multiple classes:
- Master’s 35+, 40+, 50+, 60+, 70+
- Teens and Juniors
- Debut and Novice
USBF Rules and Criteria
Men and Women
Contestants are judged in three areas; all three are weighed equally:
- Muscularity – Hardness, deep cuts, and muscle separation is the focus.
- Symmetry – A balanced physique is a major plus. Nothing stands out [in a bad way] more than an under-developed upper or lower body.
- Presentation – The key here is to practice, practice, and more practice. Assuming that you put in the hard work and have a winning physique, now you must present it properly.
For more information and examples of poses, please see pages 3 through 10 in the Judges Guide.
Male Physique is similar to Fitness Modeling. Contestants should display poise and confidence, flexing is not allowed and excessive muscle and striations will be scored lower.
Judges are looking for Symmetry and Physical Conditioning; competitors exhibiting excessive muscle or striations will be subject to penalty.
For more information and examples of poses, please see page 18 in the Judges Guide.
Classic Male Physique falls between Male Physique and Bodybuilding. Unlike Male Physique, flexing is allowed. Showcasing four (4) poses, Classic Male Physique combines Modeling and Muscle.
For more information and examples of poses, please see page 19 in the Judges Guide.
Women’s Physique is different from Women’s Bodybuilding in that the focus is not muscularity. Competitors should have good muscle tone without being viewed as massive or ripped.
Judges are looking for competitors that are physically fit with good muscle tone. Poses and all movement should reflect femininity.
For more information and examples of poses, please see page 20 in the Judges Guide.
In MsUSBF Figure competition, contestants are judged on two criteria: Physique and Presentation, which are combined into one score.
With regard to Physique, athletic conditioning and symmetry take priority. Penalty points for overconditioning include: overly muscular physique, striations in the upper arms and legs, looseness in the arms, glutes, and legs. There will be no penalty for well developed abs.
With regard to Presentation, judges are looking for poise, skin tone, make-up, hair style, suit fit, and a good smile.
For more information and examples of poses, please see pages 11 through 13 in the Judges Guide.
MsUSBF Bikini judges analyze body shape, tone, symmetry, complexion, poise presentation and overall condition. Priority is placed on a fit, toned feminine body that displays proper conditioning.
Contestants will be judged individually and in group comparisons. Facial beauty will be judged during this round as well. Contestants with a muscular appearance and/or walk and generally carry themselves in a masculine manner will be negatively scored by the judges.
MsUSBF SP Bikini includes the Sports Theme in the last round. MsUSBF Classic Bikini includes the Little Black Dress Theme in the last round.
For more information and examples of poses, please see pages 14 through 17 in the Judges Guide.