by Pam Kalstad, MS
When I see the word poser I first think of my children using the term to describe someone who is pretending to be something they aren’t. Now I practice religiously to be the best at posing I can be. It’s the icing on the cake, bow on the present and the sparkle of the diamond cut. I’m not talking about not being authentic, I’m talking about striking the poses that are mandatory for stage competition. The ability to pose on stage has been a make or break part of my competitions. I can’t stress the importance enough.
I have seen some amazing physiques back stage at competitions that have made me want to run and hide; not follow behind them on the stage. These women have put in the countless hours of training, the discipline of their diets and it showed. Their suits are beautiful and perfectly tailored for their physique. Hair, tan, make up and jewelry spot on. But, follow them I do. I can’t let all of my time, effort and energy of training go to waste. I keep telling myself that I’m bringing my best package and well, I love competing. Let the chips fall where they may, enjoy myself, have a blast and most importantly, pose!
I have placed better than some of these women. Why? Is it the politics? No. I don’t know the judges and I’ve never offered a bribe! So why did I place higher? I knew how to pose. I knew how to show my strong points and to down play my weak points. (And no, I will not list my weak points. Those are for me and my coaches to know and strengthen.) Those amazing women with their amazing physiques faltered in their posing. The judges are judging on that moment in time when you are on stage. They can only see what you show them. Show them your best.
How does one pose? There are some basic steps. First, know what poses are required for your division. Each division has their own mandatory poses. Second, learn what the judges are looking for in each pose. That last sentence is VERY important. If you don’t know what the judges are looking for how can you best display it. It is crucial to know what the judges are looking for in every pose. You are not just showing off your total physique with every pose. Third, learn how to display your physique. You may need to alter, even slightly, to enhance a weak part or to better display the strong parts. Forth, get a professional posing coach. I can’t thank my coaches enough. They are the equivalent of the twelfth man on the football team. They give you the edge by objectively assessing your physique and making changes as needed. And yes, as your body changes throughout your training your posing may change to accommodate the improvements. Those old weaknesses may become your strong points! Last but so not least, practice!!!!!! You can NEVER practice your posing too much. When you step on stage and the nerves hit and your mind goes blank your body will take over….if you have practiced. You will be able to hit a pose without overthinking. You’re level of comfort will show and your placing just may improve!