top of page

NANBF Women's Physique Guidelines



Women’s Physique consists of two parts. Group comparisons and individual presentations.

Competitors will compete in a two-piece suit and no shoes. No thongs or thong like are permitted.  All suits must be in good taste. Athletes will be warned about improper suits and are advised to contact show promoter if you are concerned your suit does not meet specifications. Competitors may wear jewelry.​

Women's Physique divisions are height based and split according to competitor numbers.

Each competitor must be a member of the NANBF.

Women's Physique competitors are permitted to crossover to Women’s Bodybuilding, Figure or Bikini.

Competitors must be 13 years of age. Competitors under 18 must have parental consent.

The use of performance-enhancing substances is never permitted. All competitors must successfully pass a polygraph screen prior to competition.

Judging criteria

  • Judging is based on competitors displaying a toned, athletic physique showcasing symmetry, femininity, shapely muscle, poise, and a graceful presentation. Leanness is to be expected but not to the degree of the striated bodybuilding level.                                                  

  • The emphasis is symmetry and this should take priority in judging over extreme conditioning.

  • ​In Women’s Physique extreme striations and vascularity as seen in Bodybuilding can go against the athlete’s score.

  • Skin tone,Tan, suit, and grooming are also considered.

  • The effectiveness of the competitors posing technique to compliment and enhance their physique in mandatory poses, along with smooth and graceful transitions. These are factors included in the judgment of presentation.

New Pre Judging Criteria for Open Classes

W Phy - 3 poses.png

Group comparisons

Each Open class competitor, individually, will be required to hit 3 poses (and no more) of their choice, center stage, prior to group comparisons.​​​​​​​  

These poses should be specific to the category and designed to highlight the competitor's physique and presentation/posing ability for the judges.  

The head judge will then direct the competitor to line up in the back of the stage to be ready for group comparisons.  

Each class is then brought to front center stage and is guided through quarter turns as a group by the head judge, to display their physique from front, side and back to determine the most balanced physique.


The head judge will instruct you to complete mandatory (muscularity) poses. You may be asked to do these several times and out of order later in the round. All poses will be done with hands open, not in fists as in Bodybuilding.


Mandatory Poses

Front Double Biceps

Left and Right Side Chest, leg extended

Left and Right Side Triceps, leg extended

Rear Double Biceps

Rear Lat Pose

Right or Left side of choice Intercostal Pose

Hands Over Head Abs, Hands Behind Head, One Leg Extended


Individual presentation/routine.

Competitors individually perform a 60-second posing routine to music of their choice.

Music containing profanity or explicit language can not be used.

This portion of the show is for the crowd and gives the competitor a chance to win a "Best Presenter" or "Best Poser" award. Individual presentations should be done tastefully and be conducive to a family atmosphere.                                                         


Remember, you are not alone on stage. Good sportsmanship is important. It makes competitions more enjoyable for everyone. While winning might feel like the most important thing during competitions, good sportsmanship teaches competitors how to be gracious and respectful towards others. If you're disappointed with a placement, show good sportsmanship. Consider asking the judges for feedback after the show. Everyone worked hard. Don't allow poor sportsmanship to ruin the event for others. Sportsmanship also applies to an audience, including viewers and coaches. Competitors or coaches who exhibit what IPE/NANBF deems as poor sportsmanship at the event or on social media are subject to disqualification and may be banned from future IPE/NANBF events...

Coach Code of Conduct

  • Coaches are to refrain from using threatening or foul language while at IPE/NANBF events.

  • Coaches are not permitted to sit in the row of seats located directly behind the judging table.

  • Coaches cannot approach the judging table at any point before or during prejudging.

  • Coaches are responsible for reading and understanding IPE/NANBF Guidelines & Criteria before registering a client in an IPE/NANBF show.

  • Coaches are not to poach or solicit the clients of other coaches while attending IPE/NANBF events. 

  • Marketing of other organizations' events is strictly prohibited. 

  • Coaches who are caught doing any of the above will be escorted out of the venue without a refund. Coaches are to model professionalism and sportsmanship.

bottom of page