Body Building: A Blend of Aesthetics and Fitness

The sport developed from weightlifting to show strength to displaying the contours of the body to reveal its symmetry.

 

Bodybuilding can be described as the use of progressive resistance exercise to control and develop one's musculature. In competitive amateur and professional bodybuilding, athletes appear in lineups doing specified poses, and later perform individual posing routines, for a panel of judges who rank competitors based on criteria such as symmetry, muscularity and conditioning. Bodybuilders prepare for competition through a combination of dehydration, fat loss, oils, carb loading to achieve maximum vascularity, and tanning (or tanning lotions) which makes their muscular definition more distinct. Well-known bodybuilders include Charles Atlas, Steve Reeves, Reg Park, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Juliana Malacarne, and Lou Ferrigno.

The sport got its birth from the tradition of lifting stones practiced in ancient Greece and Egypt which later spread to Europe in the 19th century in the form of weightlifting. The first body building contest was organized by Eugen Sandow on September 14, 1901 called the "Great Competition" which was held in the Royal Albert Hall in London. In the 1970s, bodybuilding had major publicity thanks to Arnold Schwarzenegger, Franco Columbu, Lou Ferrigno and others in the 1977 film “Pumping Iron”.

The discipline was introduced to Cameroon in the late 70s by a Frenchman whose only name we got as Peret. It was practiced in night clubs until 2007 when practitioners of the sports received the authorization of the Ministry of Sports and Physical Education to function as a federation. However, owing to the many problems encountered during the renewal exercise of the executive bureau of sports federations in 2008, elections in the new federation known as the Cameroon Bodybuilding and Fitness federation, Fecabof, were deferred to 2011 with Achille Balemagna Efonokon elected as pioneer president.

Cameroon got affiliated to the World amateur body building association WABBA, one of the world governing instances of the sport and during the recent WABBA congress in Italy; Achille Balemagna was elected pioneer president of the African body building federation and third vice president of the world organization. Most importantly, Cameroon was granted the right to host the next WABBA world championship next year. Since then Balemagna has been working to implant the new structure in Africa, work which has taken him already to Chad and Equatorial Guinea and is equally working towards the successful holding of the world championship in Cameroon.

 

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