Competing in Men’s Classic Physique
By: Beverly Advisor Team
Have you been itching to compete but don’t feel you are
quite big enough for Bodybuilding and also aren’t crazy about competing in
Men’s Physique? A new division called “Classic Physique” could be just the
thing for you. It’s planted firmly between the extremes of the massive, ripped
muscle prioritized in Bodybuilding and the smaller, cover model look of
Physique divisions. Many of you will naturally fall into this category based on
your structure and genetics. Plus, if you’re goal is to look more like Frank
Zane, or even closer to Arnold, than Kai Greene, you now have a competitive
As regular readers of No Nonsense already know, BI users and followers of our diet methods have been achieving this type of look for years. A physique where shape, symmetry and a pleasing athletic, muscular look is rewarded. It’s the type of overall physique that the majority of men will see and say, “That’s what I would like to look like”. And most women will prefer looking at!
Best of all it’s a look that’s realistically achievable for most aspiring natural competitors with hard work, dieting and proper supplementation. Going to “extremes” is not necessary and it can be balanced with your real life that includes jobs and families.
This is a brand new division and we’re going to get you way ahead of the curve by presenting a complete program to achieve the “Classic Physique”. Whether your goal is to compete, or to just do it for yourself, in the remainder of this article we’ll provide a 3-Phase Nutrition Program, a specialized 2-Phase Workout including “Feeder Workouts” to help you develop your “Classic Physique”, and if you wish to compete, we’ll also include a Presentation Section to help you better show off your “Classic Physique”. In closing we’ll include a Table of Classic Physique measurements to give you specific body part goals to shoot for.
Classic Physique Nutrition
Your Classic Physique nutrition plan is designed help you gain and retain muscle while you lean out. You should start your diet for the contest as early as possible. Don’t wait until the last minute. The earlier you start, the more time you will be able to spend in Phase 1 (the Muscle-building phase). There are 3 diet phases in all. Each one emphasizes excellent food choices which will allow you to keep gaining muscle where you need it while you whittle away fat from your waist and other problem areas.
Phase 1 Classic Physique Nutrition Plan
Start the Phase 1 nutrition plan at least 16-20 weeks out from your contest date. The first phase is designed to help you gain as much muscle as you can while increasing your muscularity. But even this early in your preparation, you should still focus on achieving that classic small waist, so losing fat is also a priority. Train as heavy and hard as possible, but use textbook form and concentrate mentally and physically on improving any weak points in your physique. (See Phase 1 Training) The recommended high protein foods and quality supplements will allow you to continue to make improvements to your physique so make every training session count.
Note: In the meal plan below if you weigh less than 165 pounds reduce meat and carb portions listed by 2 ounces.
(All meats are weighed prior to cooking.)
2 whole eggs + 4 egg whites; 6 oz. lean meat; ½ cup oatmeal – (measured before mixing with water and cooking)
(Choose one option)
Option A: Protein Drink with two scoops Ultimate Muscle Protein, 1-2 tablespoons healthy fat source (olive oil, flax oil, almond butter) or heavy whipping cream.
Option B: 8 oz. lean beef or chicken or 10-12 oz. tuna, one small apple or orange
8 oz. lean meat (chicken or other lean protein source); 6 oz. sweet potato or two-thirds cup cooked brown rice; 2 cups vegetables (broccoli, etc.) or green salad with 4 tablespoons vinegar and oil dressing
(same options as meal #2)
10 oz. very lean meat (chicken breast, fish, turkey breast, lean beef – sirloin, filet, etc.); 2 cups vegetables; salad with 2 tablespoons vinegar and oil dressing
Option A: Protein Shake or Pudding: 2 Scoops Ultimate Muscle Protein, add enough water to make a shake or pudding the consistency you desire
Option B: 8 egg whites + 2 whole eggs or 6 oz. beef; 1-2 cup vegetables
Essential Supplement Program:
1 Super Pak with meal #1
4 Ultra 40 tablets and 4 Mass Aminos with each meal listed above
The Best Optional Supplements for Phase 1 (in priority order)
Glutamine Select – take 2-4 scoops during training to preserve muscle during precontest dieting.
Muscle Synergy – if you want to continue to add muscle, get a great pump every workout, and can afford it – then Muscle Synergy is for you. You have to take enough though, eight tablets or 1 scoop twice a day if you weigh less than 185; if you’re a light heavy or heavyweight you’ll benefit most from 24 tablets or 3 scoops per day. Muscle Synergy holds lean muscle tissue while dieting better than anything. We just don’t always recommend it to everyone because of the expense.
Creatine Select will help you keep your strength up and train harder while dieting so that’s another product you should consider. Take 5 scoops per day with meals for the first 5 days, then 2 scoops daily on training days, and 1 scoop on non-training days.
An economical way to use Muscle Synergy and Creatine Select during phase 1:
Weeks 1 & 2: Use Creatine Select as directed above.
Weeks 3&4: Take Muscle Synergy and Creatine Select together for the next two weeks.
Weeks 5 & 6: Creatine Select, no Muscle Synergy.
Weeks 7 & 8: Creatine Select and Muscle Synergy.
Phase 2 Classic Physique Nutrition Plan
This is the first “precontest diet” that you’ll follow. In general you will switch from Phase 1 to Phase 2 at 8-10 weeks out. If you think that you are not leaning out fast enough go to Phase 2 at 10 weeks out; if you’re on track wait until the 8-week mark.
Note: As before, if you weigh 165 or less, reduce the meat portions by 1 or 2 ounces in each of the listed meals.
(All meats are weighed prior to cooking.)
Meal #1 8 oz. lean beef or turkey, 3 egg whites, 1 yolk, 1 grapefruit
Meal #2 Protein Drink: 2 scoops Ultimate Muscle Protein or Muscle Provider, 1 tbsp healthy fat (olive oil, flax oil, almond butter, etc.) or 1 tbsp heavy whipping cream
Meal #3 8 oz. chicken or turkey breast (weighed prior to cooking), 2 cups vegetables
Meal #4 Option A: Protein Drink: 2 scoops Ultimate Muscle Protein or Muscle Provider, 1 tbsp healthy fat (olive oil, flax oil, almond butter) or 1 tbsp heavy whipping cream
Option B: 6 oz. can tuna or 5 oz. chicken, 3 egg whites, 1 whole egg; 1 tomato
Meal #5 10 oz. lean meat (chicken, turkey, fish, 93% or leaner beef, etc.), 4 cups salad (lettuce, tomato, carrot, cucumber, green peppers, etc.), 2 tbsp cider vinegar and 1 tablespoon olive oil for a dressing
Meal #6 5 oz. chicken or turkey breast; 6 egg whites, 1 cup omelet vegetables
Monday and Thursday:
In place of meal 6 (or as an added 7th meal if you weigh over 185 and your condition warrants it):1.5 cups oatmeal (precooked) or cooked rice, 10 oz. sweet potato, 1 medium banana,1 cup vegetables, 1 tbsp butter, almond butter or oil
Supplements for Phase 2
Meal 1: 1 Super Pak, 3 EFA Gold
Each meal: 4 Ultra 40; 3 Density (and/or Mass Aminos); 3 Muscularity; and 2 Lean Out.
2-4 scoops Glutamine Select plus BCAAs and 10-20 Muscle Mass (5 Muscle Mass per scoop of Glutamine Select).
Take 3 Quadracarn 3 times daily: 1st thing in the morning, before training, and before bed.
Up-Lift – 2 scoops before training; Creatine Select w/ beta alanine – 2 scoops daily or Muscle Synergy – 2-3 scoops (or 16-24 tablets) daily.
Phase 3 “Classic Physique” Contest Peaking Nutrition Plan
Phase 3 is a no-frills, no nonsense, basic precontest diet program that works for nearly everyone. However, you should stay with your Phase 2 Plan as long as you are getting results in terms of improved conditioning. Don’t change just for the sake of change.
Kick in the Phase 3 plan at 4 to 6 weeks out and only if your progress has stalled.
Meal #1 5 oz. lean beef or turkey, 6 egg whites + 1 whole egg, ½ grapefruit
Meal #2 Option A: Protein Drink: 2 scoops Ultimate Muscle Protein or Muscle Provider, 1 tablespoon healthy fat or heavy whipping cream (optional), 4 strawberries (optional), 16 oz. water
Option B: 6 oz. tuna or chicken, 3 egg whites + 1 whole egg, 1 tomato
8 oz. chicken (weighed prior to cooking), 4 cups salad (lettuce, tomato, carrot, cucumber, green peppers, etc.), 2 tbsp cider Vinegar and 1 tablespoon olive oil for a dressing
Meal #4 Option A: 6 oz. tuna or chicken, 3 egg whites, 1 whole egg, and 1 tomato or a cup of vegetables
Option B: Protein Drink: 2 scoops Muscle Provider, 12 oz. water (if post training); or 2 scoops Ultimate Muscle Protein
Meal #5 8 oz. lean meat (chicken, turkey, fish or 93% lean beef, etc.), 2 cups vegetables
Monday and Thursday
– Add a 6th meal at the end of the day: 1.5 cups oatmeal (precooked) or cooked rice, 10 oz. sweet potato, 4 oz. banana, 1 cup vegetables, 1 tbsp butter, almond butter or oil
Meal #1: 1 Super Pak and 3 EFA Gold
Each meal: 4 Ultra 40; 3 Density; 3 Muscularity; 2 Lean Out.
Training: 2-4 scoops Glutamine Select plus BCAAs and 10-20 Muscle Mass (5 Muscle Mass per scoop of Glutamine Select). Optional take 5 Density just before training.
Take 3 Quadracarn 3 times daily: 1st thing in the morning, before training, and before bed.
Take 3 7-Keto MuscLean capsules twice daily, in the morning and afternoon.
Classic Physique Training
Your training programs should be designed to develop proportion and symmetry, as well as muscularity. You should not be looking to simply add as much size as possible or to overdevelop any particular bodypart. Overall proportion and aesthetic muscularity is the goal. We’ve developed the following training programs with those parameters in mind. They are based on decades of training experience to give you the ultimate solution to a well-balanced “Classic Physique”.
There are three parameters of progress that you should be concerned with during both Phase 1 and Phase 2 training:
Increase reps with same weight
Increase weight for the same rep range
Decrease rest intervals between sets – if your strength seems to have plateaued as you get closer to your contest, performing the same number of sets in less time becomes a very valuable form of progress.
It is very important to work each muscle through its fullest range of motion using complete extension and contraction on each exercise.
Use a workout journal to keep your progress on track. It can be a spiral notebook or as fancy as you like. Keep track of every training session. Use the “star method” to track your progress. Every time you use a heavier weight than before on a set, get more reps with a particular weight, or complete a series of sets in less time give yourself a star in your journal. A 10 Star workout means you did an extra rep or used more weight on at least ten sets during your workout. Finish a bodypart in record time and you get another star.
Phase 1 Classic Physique Training Program
Train 2 days on, 1 day off until 12 weeks out.
Day 1: Legs
Day 2: Chest / Triceps
Day 3: off
Day 4: Shoulders / Biceps / Legs (feeder workout)
Day 5: Back
Day 6: off
From 12 weeks out until 8 weeks out, train 4 days consecutively, then take the 5th day off.
You’ll be using two progression schemes and an advanced technique that we call “Feeder Workouts”.
1. Pyramid Training: Add weight lower the reps each set.
Set 1: 12 reps with a very easy warm-up weight – not all you can do for 12 reps
Set 2: 10 reps still pretty easy
Set 3: 8 reps – use a weight you could get for 9 – 12 here but stop at 8
Set 4: 6 reps – use a weight you could get 6 – 8 reps with but stop at 6
Set 5: 4 – 6 reps – a max set. Here’s where you can earn stars in your training journal. Once you reach 6 reps add weight to the final 3 sets (which will earn a star on each of these sets next time) and start back at 4 reps on set #5. Exercises using the Pyramid system are marked with *.
2. Double Progressive System: Use the same weight for all sets. Start at the low end of the suggested rep range. Gradually increase the repetitions, usually adding one rep each week until you reach the top number of suggested reps for each set of a particular exercise. Then add weight and start over at the lower end of the rep scheme. Exercises below where you should use the Double Progressive System are marked**.
3. Feeder Workouts: A feeder workout is performed two days after your primary workout for a specific bodypart. We have included feeder workouts for the shoulders, lats, and calves – full development of these bodyparts are essential in developing a classic physique. The feeder workout is a single all out rest-pause set where you complete a set of 6-10 reps taken to failure, followed by a short break (just long enough for you to take three to four slow, deep breaths), and immediately continue on to failure a second time (you should get somewhere between three and six additional reps, depending on the level of muscular endurance and the muscle fiber composition of the particular bodypart). At this point, take another short pause before going for one to four more (as many as you can get) reps. This will not only provide a nutrient-rich flush of fresh blood but will provide maximal muscle cell activation in minimum time.
Day #1 – Legs / Calves
Squat* – Pyramid 5 sets x 12/10/8/6/4-6 reps
Leg Press** or Hack Squat** 4x10–16 reps (the Hack Squat is preferred if you have the equipment available)
Leg Extension** 3x12–15 reps Super Set w/ Leg Curls** 3x10–12 reps
Lunge or Straight Leg Dead Lift** 3x10–12 Superset w/Seated Calf Raise** 5x10–12
Free Standing (no weight) Calf Raises** 5x25–50 (OUCH!)
Note: The original standard for a classic physique was that your calves and arms should measure the same. If any single muscle rates as the least developed of all muscles among bodybuilders – it’s the calf. They are stubborn and difficult to develop and require special attention. So don’t neglect your calf work.
Shoulder Feeder Workout:
Machine, cable, or dumbbell side laterals: One Extended Work set – 6-10 reps (close to maximum), rest for 3-6 deep breaths then 3-6 more reps, 3-4 more breaths then 3-4 reps to failure. Shoulder width is key to developing a classic physique, that’s why it is our first “feeder” workout.
That ends Day #1.
There are lots of opportunities to ear “stars” in your training journal. Don’t be in a big rush to use as much weight as possible in each exercise. Try to leave each workout knowing you can improve in at least one exercise the next.
Day #2 Chest, Triceps, Calves
1. DB or BB Bench Press (pyramid)* 5x12/10/8/6/4-6 – Dumbbells are preferred if you can give up the barbell bench press in developing squared off “gladiator pecs” preferred in the classic physique
2. Incline DB Press (double progressive) ** 3x6–8 reps constant weight. First session do 6 – 6 – 6 and gradually add reps and earn stars until you get to 8 – 8 – 8 then add weight and start back at 6. If you get bored adding reps, reduce rest time between sets to earn additional “stars.”
3. DB Flyes** 3x8–12;
4. DB Pullovers** 3x8–12 (These work the serratus muscles. “The serratus magnus muscles are the ‘jewel-like” muscles of your chest … they add width to the chest, shape, muscular definition – as well as classic beauty.” ˜ Vince Gironda)
5. Close Grip Bench Press* (pyramid) 4 x 12/10/8/5 – 7
6.& 7. Super Set – Triceps Pushdown** and Dips** 3x6–12 reps each – constant weight no rest between exercises, rest only after both exercises have been performed.
8. Heavy Calf Raises** 4x8–12
9. Light Calf Raises** or Donkeys** 4x15–20
Back Feeder Workout:
Shoulder-width Parallel-grip Pulldown (for width) or Under-grip Cable Seated Rows (for back density): One Extended Work set – same procedure as above: 6-10 reps (close to maximum), rest for 3-6 deep breaths then 3-6 more reps, 3-4 more breaths then 3-4 reps to failure.
Don’t forget to record your workout and any stars that you earned in your journal.
Day #3 Off
Day #4 – Shoulders / Biceps
1. DB Press* – Pyramid 4x12/10/8/6–8
2. DB or Machine Laterals** 3x8–12
3. DB or Cable Bent Laterals** 3x8–12 reps
4. Barbell Curl* – Pyramid 4x12/10/8/6–8
5. Incline DB Curl** 3x8–10
6. Machine Curl or Preacher Curl** 2x8–12
Calves Feeder Workout:
Standing Calf Raise: warm-up x 10-15 reps, 4x25, 1x100 (no weight on the 100-rep set unless you can get the full 100 reps without resting.) Remember what we said earlier about calves. You must bomb them into growth.
Day #5 – Back
1. Wide grip Chins** 4 sets of as many reps as possible per set or Wide Pulldowns* 5x12/10/8/6/4-5
2. Dead Lifts – 3 sets 10 reps (add weight each set but stay at ten reps per set) Concentrate on perfect form and add weight very gradually in 5-lb. increments each week.
3. Bent Rows* or T-Bar Row* – 4 sets pyramid 12/10/8/6-8
4. Reverse Grip Front Pulldowns** or 1 Arm DB Row** 3x8–12
5. Straight Arm Pullovers** 3x10–12 (lie on a bench length wise – keep arms straight)
6. 10 minutes of abs
Choose one Feeder Workout, not both:
same procedure as back and shoulder feeder workouts.
b. Quads: Smith Machine Squats
Phase 2 Classic Physique Training Program
Start your Phase 2 training program eight weeks out from your contest. During Phase 2 training you’ll be doing a lot of supersets. Supersets allow you to get more work done in less time. Remember, less rest between sets is one of the parameters of progress. Your Phase 2 training will be more focused on improving your proportions and increasing your chest to waist ratio. Note: Steve Reeves, one of the all-time best examples of the “classic physique”, is reported to have attained a 23 inch differential between his chest and waist measurement. A good goal for you is 15 inches or more. If your expanded chest measures 45 inches, your waist would measure 30 inches or less. As your diet becomes stricter during phase 2, it will become harder and harder to increase reps or poundage, so reducing the time between sets becomes more and more important. You’ll be supersetting antagonistic muscle groups to improve balance and proportion as well as to add a fat burning aspect to your training.
It’s not necessary to “run” from one exercise to the next when supersetting. After you complete a superset rest 60-90 seconds and then start your next set. Since you will be working each bodypart twice every eight days, we will no longer be performing feeder workouts.
Train three days on – one day off:
Day 1: Chest and Back
Day 2: Legs
Day 3: Shoulders and Arms
Day 4: Off; Repeat
Day #1 – Chest, Back, Abs
A. DB Bench Press 4-5 sets of 7-10 reps
B. Chin-Ups 4-5 sets max reps per set or Lat Pulldowns 4-5 sets of 8-10 reps
Superset # 2:
A. Incline DB Press 3-4 sets of 8-10 reps
B. 1-Arm DB Rows 3-4 sets of 6-10 reps
A. DB Flyes 3-4 sets of 10-12 reps
B. Cable Rows 3-4 sets of 8-12 repsFinishing Exercise: DB Pullovers 3-4 sets of 10-15 reps
Lower Back: Hyperextensions 3 sets of 15- 20 reps.
Three or four exercises, 3-4 sets each for 15-25 reps per exercise.
You should count total reps for abs per workout with a goal of 250-350 reps total.
Day #2 – Legs, Calves
A. Leg Extensions 3 sets of 8-10 reps
B. Smith Machine Squat or Leg Press 3 sets of 8-12 reps
A. Hack Squat 4 sets of 6-12 reps
B. Straight Leg Deadlift 4 sets of 10 reps
A. Lunge 3 sets of 10-15 reps
B. Leg Curl 3 sets of 6-10 reps
Standing Calf Raise 4 sets of 15-20 reps
Seated Calf Raise 3 sets of 10-15 reps
Donkey Calf or Calf Press 3 sets of 20-25 reps
Day #3 – Shoulders, Arms, Abs
Straight sets for shoulders:
1. Shoulder Press (machine, dumbbell, military – your choice) 4 sets of 6-10 reps
2. Side Lateral Raise 3 sets of 8-10 reps
3. Rear Laterals (DB, Cable, or Machine) 3 sets of 10-12 reps
4. Side Cable Raise 3 sets of 8-12 reps
A. Concentration Curl 3 sets of 6-10 reps (squeeze)
B. Triceps Pushdown 3 sets of 10-12 reps
A. DB Curl 3 sets of 6-10 reps
B. Lying Tricep Extension 3 sets of 8-10 reps
A. Barbell or Preacher Curl 3 sets of 6-8 reps
B. Close Grip Bench Press and Dips 3 sets of 10-12 reps
A. Reverse Curl 3 sets of 8-12 reps
B. Wrist Curl 3 sets of 12-20 reps
C. Overhead Pulley Tricep Extension (or Triceps Machine) 3 sets of 8-15 reps
same as Day 1 (250-350 total reps)
Not only has proportion, balance, and symmetry taken a back seat during the current bodybuilding scene, but the art of physique presentation has also taken a back seat. If you attend a bodybuilding contest you’ll see years of training, strict nutrition, and who knows what else has been done, go to waste when you see the awkwardness many of the competitors exhibit onstage. That’s another reason for the institution of the “Classic Physique” division.
As you follow both your nutrition and workout programs to a tee, you will be well on your way to developing a Classic Physique which highlights proportion, symmetry, pleasing lines, and a small waist. Aesthetics are as important as muscularity and in order to display your physique to its best advantage you’ll need to practice your presentation. If your goal is to compete in the “Classic Physique” division you’ll need to know the rules of competition.
The prejudging will consist of semi-relaxed quarter turn comparisons and five compulsory poses.
The Classic Physique Compulsory Poses
Front Double Biceps
Back Double Biceps
Abdominal and Thigh pose
Favorite Classic pose (most muscular is not permitted)
In the finals you’ll perform your posing routine (up to a maximum of 60 seconds) and if you win your class you’ll compete in a posedown for the overall title.
Here are some tips to get started on a structured posing practice regimen:
PHASE 1 POSING PRACTICE
Remember! “Classic Physique” competition is posing! No one will ask what you can bench press or squat
How you present yourself and look on stage is all that counts
Start posing practice two days per week at 12 weeks out
Start with 2 sets of each pose (quarter turns and mandatories) for 10 – 15 seconds. For the next four weeks hold each pose for an additional 5 seconds each week
Spend most of your time practicing on your front facing pose and finding which variations of your compulsory poses best highlight your physique
Start each pose from your feet up to make certain your legs are flexed
Work your way around in a circle hitting every pose
After completing all of the quarter turns and compulsory poses, that’s one set. Do 2 total sets
PHASE 2 POSING PRACTICE
Eight weeks posing practice schedule: Start at 2 sets of each pose for 20-30 seconds. For the next four weeks hold each pose for an additional 5 seconds each week.
Remember to start each pose from the feet up – make sure to keep your legs flexed, suck in your gut, lift your chest, and relax your facial muscles.
Quarter turn to the right
Quarter turn to the rear
Quarter turn to the front
Front Double Biceps
Back Double Biceps
Abdominal and Thigh pose
Favorite Classic pose – this should be your best pose. Experiment until you find the exact variation of a pose that best highlights your symmetry, proportion, and muscularity. Then practice it to perfection.
10-minute pre-judging drill:
Make a 10-minute recording where you call out quarter turns and poses just like the head judge at prejudging. This drill is tremendous for practicing quarter turns. No rest between poses; stay tight the entire drill.
For variation get a video of an actual prejudging off of You Tube and go through it just like you’re on stage.
The Individual Routine:
Six weeks out (or sooner) start working on your individual routine. Your posing routine should complement your strong points (e.g. symmetry, shape, conditioning, etc.) while at the same time expressing personality.
You can develop your routine by starting with the mandatory poses, then add a few flattering optional poses. You’ll be able to find many classic physique photos on the web. Mimic each pose you see and determine which ones feel comfortable and flatter your strong points.
Your routine should be based solely on your strongest poses. This is your opportunity to show the judges only what you want them to see.
Select your music well in advance and make a professional quality CD. Often it is nearly impossible to create a posing routine based on your favorite song. It is usually better to choose your music to fit your routine, not vice versa. Record only the 60 seconds of music on which you will base your routine. Don't record the entire song. Make a “posing practice CD” with your 60-second selection recorded over and over with a 30 second delay between cuts. You can practice your routine over and over without restarting the CD.
Points to remember
You will often be asked to hold the front facing pose on stage much longer than the others. You should continue to hold this stance anytime you are on stage throughout the show when you are not being directly judged or as others are "called out". Never completely relax and always keep your legs tensed.
Practice hitting the poses with your eyes closed and then opening them to see if you are hitting each pose correctly. Remember, on stage you have no mirror.
It is not necessary to complete all of your posing "sets" at one session, but be sure to complete all scheduled "sets" of each posing round – facings, mandatories, and individual routine with music – by the end of each day.
Posing sessions are one of the key factors in developing hardness and muscle separation – you can overdo training or cardio but you can’t pose too much!
In closing, we’d like to give you some guidelines as listed in Building the Classic Physique The Natural Way by Steve Reeves with John Little and Bob Wolff.
These are the maximum symmetrical proportions for each individual male based on height and bone size:
Classic Physique Proportions
Arm Size = 252% of wrist size
Calf Size = 192% of ankle size
Neck Size = 79% of head size
Chest Size = 148% of pelvis size
Waist Size = 86% of pelvis size
Thigh Size = 175% of knee size
Remember, these are maximum symmetrical measurements, and it is your proportions that count. In other words they are the maximum measurements for a body part without getting out of proportion. A good goal is to aspire to reach 90% of the maximum. For example, if your wrist measures 7″, the maximum symmetrical arm measurement would be 18”. 90% of 18″ is 16.2″ which would be very commendable.
If you’d like a website to do the math for you go to: » muscleandstrength.com/tools/ideal-measurements
Steve Reeves also devised a chart that determines the maximum ideal weight for a person’s height en route to building a classic physique. A 6″ male’s ideal weight is 200 lbs. At 5′11″ it goes to 190 lbs and at 6′1″ to 210 lbs. After that every inch below 5′11″ results in a reduction 5 pounds per inch. Every inch above 6″ results in an addition of 10 lbs. At 5′8″ the ideal weight is 175 lbs and at 6′3″, it is 230 pounds. Again, the 90% of maximum criteria is a worthy goal for classic physique competition.
The NPC has developed their own chart of acceptable heights and weights (which you can find on their website at » npcnewsonline.com/classic-physique
They are a little more lenient and go above Reeves’ maximum weights. For example, a competitor 5’11”– 6’ may weigh up to 207 lbs. One who is 5′7 up to 5″ may weigh 177 lbs. In classic physique there is no advantage to weighing in at the top of your class, symmetry and proportion are what counts, not size.
In this article we have laid out a comprehensive program to help you achieve a “Classic Physique”. If you are training for a specific contest we’ve given you a step-by-step guide to follow. If you follow it to the letter – nutrition, supplements, training, and posing practice – whether you compete or not, you’ll be in the best shape of your life.