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Thread: Greg kovacs: Why Bodybuilders Should Practice Their Posing!

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    Colemanesque Beti ona's Avatar
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    Default Greg kovacs: Why Bodybuilders Should Practice Their Posing!

    Bodybuilding and posing. These 2 words used to be synonymous but over the past several years, as the physiques have evolved, it has changed drastically from the good old days when posing and physically displaying the body as a classical art form with ease and grace was an important and emphasized part of the bodybuilding equation. Now the routines of the top athletes are nothing more than hitting some hard muscle shots and wandering from one side of the stage to the other. There are a few athletes in the current crop that are exceptions to this rule but, as a whole, it seems to be the case.

    I'm sure that sounds absolutely hilarious coming from a guy who hated posing and practicing his posing. I focused solely on my gym training to develop my body and never did specific posing workouts. I call them workouts because posing was physically demanding and works the body differently than weight training alone does. What I failed to realize at the time was that competitive bodybuilding really is not about the workouts in the gym. That is just one element. . . to develop mass. But posing, and I mean hard posing, should be the most important element in a bodybuilder's arsenal . It's what a bodybuilder does. The stage is our battle ground.
    How do athletes in other sports get better? They practice what they will be doing on game day. Hockey players skate and shoot a puck. Basketball players shoot hoops and dribble a basketball. These athletes all incorporate weight training and cardio conditioning but practicing what they will be doing on game day still takes priority. We, as bodybuilders, focus most on our gym workouts and cardio but when it comes to posing practice, it takes a secondary role. Our game day is the stage so shouldn't intense posing practice be the main emphasis, above all else, to becoming the best bodybuilder you can be? Posing is to our sport like swinging a golf club is for a golfer. Or maybe it should be.

    I will use myself as an example. Before i won the Canadian Nationals, I practiced posing, religiously, for 45 minutes a day for the final 16 weeks leading up to the show. Not only did it help me become a better poser, but it was definitely a form of training the body as a whole, giving my body a classical and streamlined look. Take a look at the videos on youtub; I had a very classical, athletic look to my body. . .with nice shape and a tight midsection and core and my breathing was very controlled for being 300 pounds. I feel that my look was attained from all that posing sessions. I'd be sweating buckets by the time I finished with one of those posing workouts. So not only does posing help in your presentation but it definitely gives the body a different look.

    I'm convinced had I continued that posing workout into the offseason, 3 times a week, every day; it would have made a profound effect on my physique. I, on the other hand, did the opposite and focused more and more only on the training and extremely heavy lifting and less posing workouts to the point that I avoided posing, altogether, unless I had an appearance or guest posing. I lost that streamlined look and my core and stabilizers got weaker causing my body to get out of balance. Posing is similar to yoga. . it enables you to keep your body properly aligned against the pull of gravity. And again, I'm talking hard posing. Inhaling fully during transitions and fully exhaling as you move into the next pose. Throw some lunge poses in there and some classical twisting shots where balance and proper posture are needed so you don't fall on your face and you have a great posing workout.

    If you look at the pros from the late 80's and early 90's, the physiques had a different, more streamlined, look to them and the muscles were more detailed. The posing seemed effortless with smooth transitions from pose to pose. There was a lot more posing from the ground as well as lunging poses. The facial expressions were confident with the odd smile or smirk. In comparison, do I even have to comment on some of the facial expressions these guys make when they pose today? Mouths open like they are screaming, the odd tongue sticking out and straining until you wonder if they soiled themselves. The routines are nothing more than lumbering from pose to pose hitting them hard and then, as I stated in my opening remarks, wandering from one side of the stage to the other. Also, the hand gestures for crowd response like Hulk Hogan at a WWF wrestling match is getting a little old as well.

    This year's Arnold Classic is a perfect example. Dennis Wolf won the best poser award and, no offense to him, but his routine certainly wasn't spectacular and I think the reason he won it was because he at least made an effort and threw in a few classic twisting shots and actually did a lunge pose or 2. I'm surprised that with a prize of $10,000 bucks for best poser that someone didn't get a little more creative and come out with a killer routine. To this day, when the subject of great posers comes up, what names are brought up? Ed Corny, Arnold (I personally thought he was a great poser, He definitely knew how to showcase his physique), Bob Paris, Francis Benfatto, Vince Taylor, Lee Labrada, Shawn Ray and Flex Wheeler. You don't really hear the names of any of the current group of guys because the focus has shifted. I really think if the current crop of pros would start incorporating posing workouts with transitions and extreme contraction and deep breathing and exhalation their presentations would improve coupled with the added benefits that go along with it. One pro that I feel is doing this extensively is Kai Greene. And it shows in his presentation. Although, I think he rolls around a little too much and does handstands which are definitely unique but not really artistic or classical. I think lunging and squatting are as close to the ground a physique display should go.

    On a final note, I would like to say I have not really posed at all in some years now and the other day, just for kicks, I went through my mandatories and 2-minute routine, nice and slow and deliberate; flexing hard and keeping everything tight say for 10 to 15 minutes even with a few lunge poses thrown in. To say I found it difficult was an understatement. I was feeling muscles I forgot I had and after I recovered I actually felt a little more like myself again. I think even for the non-competitor, 20 to 30 minutes 3 days a week is a great way to condition and align your body. It will definitely enhance your gym workout too because it will make you more aware of all your muscles, as a whole, working as a single unit. And the mind-muscle connection will improve as well. Give it a try and tell me what you think. Food for thought!

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    Online Editor Ron Harris's Avatar
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    Wise words from the late Kovacs. Few bb's these days dedicate much time to posing, and it shows. Watch the old-school guys from the 70's and 80's, they were masters because they treated it very seriously.
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    Online Editor Ron Harris's Avatar
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    Lee Haney said in his column recently that Arnold came up to him after his first Mr. O in 1983 in Munich and told him if he improved his presentation, he could win the O for years to come. He even hooked Lee up with his old posing coach, and we all know Lee went on to dominate for the 8 years after.
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    Wow, that's some pretty cool info Ron! I know it's been talked about over and over but if the Olympia or any bodybuilding competition would be judged by muscularity and posing I think it would make the sport a little bit more interesting, I'm pretty young (19) and I've been following bodybuilding for about 3 years now so not that long, the Olympia for me has been feeling a little bit boring since I always for some reason expect to see some Arnold, Shawn Ray or Ed Corney type of posing and get blown away. It can become a little bit frustrating when you’re watching the Olympia or Arnold and 60% of the pros use the same posing song with the same type of posing which includes running around the stage hitting random poses and trying to get the audience "pumped up” In my books you can have a good physique but if you can pose in synch with the music you will stand out! Fred Smalls and Kai Greene can put on a good show but the posing is considerably different than what I’m talking about.

    When I think about a mind blowing bodybuilding routine, this always comes to mind: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0jpIENgUptU

    This is just my opinion, I’m not trying to be negative or mea as I have huge respect for the pros and what they do, I am sure that there will be people who will disagree with me and I understand as I’m just a teen that barely knows the sport.

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    It certainly is nice to see guys today who take posing seriously -- and more than just hitting mandatories. Real artistic posing with flowing transitions that accentuate the physique. Shawn Ray's documentary the 'evolution' of bodybuilding is, to me, in many ways, inaptly named. It should be the 'devolution' of bodybuilding. Posing is certainly one of the ways that bodybuilding has deteriorated...and badly. This is also one feature of the sport, were it improved, would attract more fans. Most new fans aren't as captivated by the mandatories as they are the routines. I know Bob Chic has repeatedly supported the IFBB's decision to not score the posing, and his defense is somewhat cogent. Ultimately, though, I think it would benefit the sport in the long run to have the posing judged. Otherwise it is meaningless. And by offering more money to the winner of 'best poser' won't do anything, because honestly, only one or two guys at each contest are in the running for that prize -- and everyone knows it. It won't provide a GENERAL incentive to all to better their posing.

    A genuine disincentive needs to be given to those lunks that go out and hit a series of crab shots with their tongues hanging out. And the ironic gesture to the audience for more applause for a piteous display -- so hilarious.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Julienne_Salad View Post
    It certainly is nice to see guys today who take posing seriously -- and more than just hitting mandatories. Real artistic posing with flowing transitions that accentuate the physique. Shawn Ray's documentary the 'evolution' of bodybuilding is, to me, in many ways, inaptly named. It should be the 'devolution' of bodybuilding. Posing is certainly one of the ways that bodybuilding has deteriorated...and badly. This is also one feature of the sport, were it improved, would attract more fans. Most new fans aren't as captivated by the mandatories as they are the routines. I know Bob Chic has repeatedly supported the IFBB's decision to not score the posing, and his defense is somewhat cogent. Ultimately, though, I think it would benefit the sport in the long run to have the posing judged. Otherwise it is meaningless. And by offering more money to the winner of 'best poser' won't do anything, because honestly, only one or two guys at each contest are in the running for that prize -- and everyone knows it. It won't provide a GENERAL incentive to all to better their posing.

    A genuine disincentive needs to be given to those lunks that go out and hit a series of crab shots with their tongues hanging out. And the ironic gesture to the audience for more applause for a piteous display -- so hilarious.
    You have to really look objectively to form an informed opinion of whether the posing round being scored would REALLY make a diference. It doesnt.

    People have short memories, and make the "good ol days" out to be much better than they really were...like the fish story.

    First, the routines in the "old days" werent a whole lot better than they are today, about the same ratio of guys who ACTUALLY posed better, more classical, etc...there were a handful, just as there are now.

    Secondly, The routines werent "scored" anymore then than they are currently...just a big facade and a round used to make things they way they wanted. If they REALLY scored the posing round back then...the landscape of Olympia victors would have changed quite dramatically, especially during the Dorian era.

    Third, scoring the posing wouldnt bring one more fan to the table...you either are a fan of BB, or you arent...no one would be swayed by a classical routine...at best, youre going to show a Melvin Anthony routine to a "non fan" and they might be amazed by his ability to move like that for having all that muscle..but thats about it. Theyre not going to suddenly take an interest in going to shows....

    Last...the posing isnt "meaningless", it's an opportunity for the athlete to display their physique..for themselves, and the paying fans who are there to see the best physiques. It's also a chance for the judges to access the physiques on an individual basis before the comparisons...anything BUT meaningless.

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    i would prefer to see a line up of melvin anthony's opposed to lug heads like branch who just stomp to each corner of the stage smashing most musculars.

    after reporting on 2 british finals and a few qualifiers i am often bored to tears by the guys who cant be arsed to practice their posing or those who just wing it. Very rarely do you get a bodybuilder who will shut up the rabble of conversations people raise during the posing round as to be fair, people switch off.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Incredible Bulk View Post
    i would prefer to see a line up of melvin anthony's opposed to lug heads like branch who just stomp to each corner of the stage smashing most musculars.

    after reporting on 2 british finals and a few qualifiers i am often bored to tears by the guys who cant be arsed to practice their posing or those who just wing it. Very rarely do you get a bodybuilder who will shut up the rabble of conversations people raise during the posing round as to be fair, people switch off.
    Only so many "best posers" in the world...just as there are only so many best singers, best actors, etc...

    yes, in an ideal world...everyone would be great at presentation.

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    Colemanesque Beti ona's Avatar
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    As Bob says, often we value more posers of the past, today we also have great posers, but nevertheless we will not deny that most are some ass pose without any grace. Go from side to side with his hand on ear and shot double biceps and most muscular, is very ridiculous and boring.

    I do not believe in incentives by way of awards. Ranking bodybuilders for their routines would also be too subjective. Simply they should do a better job.

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    Everyone does a uncle Rico and long for the good ol days. All the videos and info of the past are of the great ones. Nobody filmed and held on to footage of average joes. So everyone looks back and thinks the past was soooo good. No it wasn't.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nsxmatt View Post
    Everyone does a uncle Rico and long for the good ol days. All the videos and info of the past are of the great ones. Nobody filmed and held on to footage of average joes. So everyone looks back and thinks the past was soooo good. No it wasn't.

    Exactly right...what everyone see's are the superstars of that era showcased...but notthe other 20 shleps that couldnt pose for shit...we have some great posers today...and we have some not great posers...same as 10 years ago, same as 20 years ago...

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    Independently of what happens in the professional stage, than you think about Greg words? A bodybuilder would improve it muscle mind connection and resistance if would practice 2 or 3 times a week? Could replace some cardio sessions in pre-competition?

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    lol.. none of you guys actually went to these shows back in the day..

    It was standard practice to choreograph a routine for the night show..

    Wayne DeMilla's NOC shows and the Mr. O all required the competitors to present a posing routine, didn't matter if it was shitty, good, or great..

    not like nowadays posing which is walking side to side gesturing to fans with hand to ear for them to clap..

    Not sure what you guys are talking about..
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    Quote Originally Posted by chick View Post
    Exactly right...what everyone see's are the superstars of that era showcased...but notthe other 20 shleps that couldnt pose for shit...we have some great posers today...and we have some not great posers...same as 10 years ago, same as 20 years ago...
    lol.. you can't compare the two eras..

    NOC produced by Wayne DeMilla at the Beacon Theatre was actually a SHOW, not like the NY Pro held at the Tribeca Arts which is garbage.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave415 View Post
    lol.. none of you guys actually went to these shows back in the day..

    It was standard practice to choreograph a routine for the night show..

    Wayne DeMilla's NOC shows and the Mr. O all required the competitors to present a posing routine, didn't matter if it was shitty, good, or great..

    not like nowadays posing which is walking side to side gesturing to fans with hand to ear for them to clap..

    Not sure what you guys are talking about..
    Have to agree here. The posing today is garbage and that hand to ear shit is the biggest fucking joke ever. All these guys do now is hit a couple poses walk to the other side throw there hands up like LETS GO hit another pose do the same shit on the other side and whatever. Its terrible and painful to watch sometimes.
    "Anyone can speak english when in might get you a little strange lol"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Incredible Bulk View Post
    i would prefer to see a line up of melvin anthony's opposed to lug heads like branch who just stomp to each corner of the stage smashing most musculars.
    Totally agree!

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    Quote Originally Posted by dave415 View Post
    lol.. you can't compare the two eras..

    NOC produced by Wayne DeMilla at the Beacon Theatre was actually a SHOW, not like the NY Pro held at the Tribeca Arts which is garbage.

    All of which has nothing to do with the topic at hand...

    And what Wayne ran was a CIRCUS, not a show...what prt did you like? The old school costomes, the camel on stage, or the later day Michael Jackson pedo skit and BDSM whips and chains gig..?

    Wayne was more akin to the brief WBF bullshit...which did nothing for BB.

    The NY Pro is a Pro BB competition...like the other shows.

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