Issue #15


by Juan Carlos Lopez

Arnold Classic 2006 Photos and Results

Arnold Classic 2006 Review

Arnold Classic Expo Review and Photo Gallery

San Francisco Grand Prix Pro Figure and Steel Rose Photos and Results

San Francisco Grand Prix Pro Figure and Steel Rose Review

Finland's Boosman Fitness Classic Preview
by Kaisa Piippo

20 Questions with our Cover Model: IFBB Figure Pro Waleska Valle

Video Interview with Cover Model: Waleska Valle

Christian Podgorski: Bodybuilding Art

Waleska Valle, Amy Huber, Holly Powell, Danielle Rouleau & Liz Lozano

Getting a Figure Pro Card in Europe
by Annika Warg

Video Interview: NPC Figure Megan Payan

The Joy of Dieting
by Kaisa Piippo

Video Interview: CBBF Figure Roxana Kreklo

Roxana Kreklo Profile of a True Athlete

Tweaking that Figure Posing
by Linda Cusmano

Video Interview: Model and Competitor Tina Jo Orban

Tweaking that Figure Posing! by Linda Cusmano

When you watch a Figure contest you cannot sit there without being in AWE of the beauty and statuesque bodies.  How do they look so good everyone wonders?  Is it all diet and training?  Well yes that is part of it of course, in order to see the hardness and lines you need to diet down to a leaner you and workout to bring the muscles pumped to the surface but that is not all there it to it!  If you do not learn how to SHOW the physique properly you will suffer and be under rated.  The judges cannot see tone if you do not display it appropriately.

Linda Cusmano

There is always different ways to utilize your poses for Figure and many women would have varied answers as to what their best or favorite stance is but there are a few small tricks and tips that you can take away to help enhance your Figure posing.
There are a couple of styles of Figure contests, one has a posing round similar to bodybuilding with front double biceps etc except done with open hands, no fists and in most cases these Figure contests also have a routine requirement as well as regular comparison rounds (rules and requirements vary).  The other is simpler requiring simple stances enhancing your physique in quarter turn comparison rounds requiring 2-3 styles of swim wear such as one piece and two pieces.  The idea is to display femininity that is usually not too prevalent in Bodybuilding (making it differ in this way), although that is also changing drastically!

Why do they wear those hooker heels?  This is a common question with some women snidely remarking how ugly or smutty they appear but what they do not realize is that these shoes, which even some competitors think are ugly yet still use them, enhance your body, legs, glutes and overall appearance.  You will notice that even the tall gals who opt for no platform loose that ‘stature’ so the first tip is to go for those clear platform heels and remember they can be fun and there are so many choices that will help suit your tastes and needs at the same time.  It’s not like you have to wear them out of the house unless you want to!  Most gals and their other half’s definitely love these shoes!
The gals usually push the toe of the foot closest to judges to hike up the hip and show tone on the leg.  It is also easier to hike up the tush during the back pose because of these shoes, which helps lift the lower area of the butt cheek.

Why are they so dark?  Another common question along with, should I tan?  Of course you should find your personal preference toward darker skin tone if you are not already dark but there are options other than physically tanning.  There are some deep color creams and sprays which are called competition tan or bodybuilding tan which will have you just right for those very whitening stage lights.  It is amazing how much lighter you look on stage so don’t worry, go dark!  This is what will enhance your lines and hardness.
Slight oil will also help with this but going to slick with oil will cost you so be on the conservative end with that.

Why are they all eating chocolate or drinking booze backstage?  Well the booze is usually not allowed but kept quiet, most competitors do swig back some booze or alternately will eat sweets such as chocolate or icing just before going out on stage since it goes straight to the blood causing the veins to appear more outright and give you some POP!  The vascularity to a certain point is good and it really pops out the muscles!  Last thing you need is to look flat!

What are they spraying all over their bodies?  One backstage secret is sparkle hair spray.  Many gals like to use this as an extra shimmer.  It works well and is so easy to apply not to mention affordable!  It is basically a sparkle hair spray which you can get in most teen shops like Claire’s or find online.  The sparkle colors can vary but most use gold or silver.  The spray is usually not to stinky or suffocating like normal hair sprays so it is friendly to those around you and sometimes the backstage changing quarters can be quite cramped.

Linda Cusmano

Are they tensing while they stand there?  Yes to a degree they do, tightening up all the muscles of the body from quads to shoulders will help your shape and make your muscles look dense although the degree of tensing is not to that of bodybuilding and you do not want to look strained whatsoever.  You need to do this with a smile and make sure to not flair arms too wide or do funny things with your fingers.  Work on polishing this and you can’t lose.  Also keep the heels together and one foot slightly ahead and angled.

When in posing rounds you will tense up greatly during this round.  There are simple tricks to make the poses stand out more such as:

  • Turning your pinkies back during your front double biceps pose (doing this as well with the back double biceps pose), and ensure elbows are not squeezed back nor too low, plus you do not want to scrunch shoulders.
  • Pointing your toe will help enhance your quad during your ab thigh poses and other front poses (you should still tense your leg even for front double bi etc)
  • For the back poses make sure you practice getting your shoulder blades flat against your back and spread.

These are just a few ideas that will help you enhance your Figure poses and take home a great experience.
Last few tips for the no posing figure, keep shoulders level, they may feel level but may not be so use a mirror and video for practice.  Find 2-3 poses you like varying the legs straight or slightly bent and working on slight angles as well as straight on which in most cases is the least flattering but sometimes required.

Linda Cusmano
Triple Certified Elite Trainer
Triple Pro Fitness Competitor
National Figure Competitor
Bodybuilder, Obstacle and Strength Challenger
Fitness Model and Writer
And coach for all the above!

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About the Author...

Linda Cusmano

Certified Personal Trainer and Fitness Competitor
Body Rush Personal Training & Lifestyle Consultation

If you are beyond this level and looking for more tips toward contest physiques then feel free to email me your questions and I will try to help.
Any fitness, health, diet, rehab or contest (fitness, figure, bodybuilding, fitness model) questions can be emailed to Angel@lindacusmano.com

Please visit Linda's Web sites:


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