Learn how to pose as if you were a statue of art!
You've built up some muscle and now it's time to show it off! Any serious bodybuilder needs to know
how to pose, so here we've detailed the most popular, 'classic' poses that you should know how to
We'll start off with the front double biceps pose (the single arm version of which even
non-bodybuilders know and you've probably even posed like it yourself!) and then the famous 'crab'
or 'most muscular' pose which shows you off at your most massive best. The other poses constitute
the statutary poses that you'll need to know if you ever compete.
Have fun,and remember the more you
pose the better you'll get. Look at pictures of other bodybuilders posing and if you can go to
bodybuilding shows and watch videos of bodybuilders posing - all this will help improve your own
The Front Double Biceps Pose
As in the illustration to the left, this pose has you standing face on, feet positioned slightly
closer than shoulder width. You're arms are out to the sides, flexed at the elbow, with your arms
tensed. You need to tense your legs to bring out the definition and shape in your quads and tense
your abdominals and upper body. Try bending your arms to different degrees to see what looks best
for you - for some the best angle is greater than 90 degrees but for others it's with the arms less
bent. You'll generally look better if your elbows are slightly higher than your shoulders.
The front double biceps is actually a very hard pose to look massive in, and so we don't recommend
you worry too much about how big you look while doing this pose. Just try to look as good as you
possibly can and as you pack on muscle you'll look better and better!
The 'Crab' or 'Most Muscular' Pose
This is our personal favourite pose and also a very popular one in general and for good reason too -
it's a great pose for making you look HUGE! It's a easy to learn but incredibly difficult to master.
Basically you bend over at the waist a bit and bring your hands almost together, tensing your slightly
bent arms, pecs and delts as hard as you can. If possible bring your traps out by tensing your upper
back up and over your delts - you'll get a feel how to do it as you practice.
With practice you'll
figure out how best to flex your arms and how much to bend over to look as good as you possibly can
for your own body structure. Have fun with this one - you'll look awesome while doing it!
The Side Chest Pose
This pose is one of the timeless classic poses and is great for showing off your pecs and arms. As
in the photo stand side on and bend the front leg, tensing your calf. Bend the rear leg slightly so
that you have a decent bend at the knee of the front leg. Bring your arms out in front of you, arms
straight and grasp your hands together. Slowly bring the front arm down to your side whilst bending
it at the elbow, turning your torso very slightly towards the front as you do it. Hold the pose at
the point your front arm reaches a right angle in the arm and your upper arm is vertical (as in the
photo). Puff out your chest as much as you can and tense your arms against each other. Smile and try
to look as cool as possible!
This is a great pose if you have good pecs and arms.
The Side Triceps Pose
This is another classic pose and is very similar to the side chest pose except that instead your
hands clasping together in front of you they are clasped together behind you. You start off with
your front arm being bent up, as if you are scratching an itch high up your side and then with your
hands together you slowly straighten the arm down until it is pointing straight down at the floor.
You can either do it slowly, tensing all the time or you can 'pop' into the final position, going
for impact on the viewer. Some people mix the two methods together, going slowly to start with and
then finishing with a small pop into the straight arm position.
It's a fun pose to do and if you're
lean (shows the abs off well) or have big triceps it'll be a good pose for you to do.
The Front Lat Spread Pose
If you've got a big back you'll be doing this pose often! It's a lovely pose once you can get it
right but it seems to be one of the few poses that many people have difficulty doing correctly or
effectively. This may be because it's one of the few poses where you're actually stretching some
muscles, not just tensing everthing you've got!
Stand facing forwards with your feet fairly close together, your knees bent slightly and your knees
slightly further apart than your feet are - this will help you tense your legs nicely. Then bend
over at the waist very slightly and put both arms just around the back of your waist, your elbows
bent nicely and back. Then slowly bring your arms around in front of you, trying to puff out your
lats as you do so, so that when you have your arms out in front of you (fists still at your waist)
your lats are as wide out (envision wings!) possible. The bigger your lats are the better you'll
look! With practice you'll be able to get your lats to puff out nicely, but if you have practice
keep trying - you'll get there.
The Rear Double Biceps Pose
This is basically the Front Double Biceps but from the rear! There are slight differences however -
in rear poses you have one foot stuck out to the rear, tensing your calf, hamstring and glute to
show your muscularity off, and instead of worrying about tensing your abs you tense your whole back
instead. Your arms are pulled back more in this pose too, to try and make your back look as muscly
If you've got a big back this will be one of your best poses, practice it lots!
The Rear Lat Spread Pose
Again, this is very similar to the Front version but with more emphasis on the back muscles (i.e.
don't try to stretch your lats out as much as you do with the front version as otherwise your back
will look flat and lack muscle separation) and you stick one leg back and tense the calf, hams and
It's another great exercise if you have a big barn-door of a back!
The Abs and Thigh Pose
This classic pose really shows your abs off if you're lean. Stand facing forward and put one foot
forward, balls of the foot on the ground and tense your legs. Then bring your arms up and over your
head, clasping your hands together behind your head. Then tense down on your abs, bending your torso
a little so that your abs show. You need to be lean for this pose to look good, so don't worry too
much about doing this pose while you're off season and posessing a normal level of body fat.
Practice it more and more as you get leaner (especially if you're dieting for a competition) and
it's a nice exercise for your abs if you practice it enough. Remember to keep your legs tensed as
you tense your abs.
Try to practice in front of a mirror so that you can correct problems yourself and ask more
knowledgeable bodybuilders for criticism if you know of any - you'll find at least a few friendly
bodybuilders at gyms who'll be more than happy to comment. Be brave though, you may not like what
you hear. With persistance and effort you'll get very good at posing, and when you finally get up on
stage and compete you'll be very thankful for all the posing practice you'll have done. Have fun!