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International Federation of BodyBuilding & Fitness

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Sport bodybuilding, classic bodybuilding, men's physique, women's physique, fitnessTemplate:Disambiguation needed, bodyfitness, bikini fitness, children fitness, wheelchair bodybuilding
Founded International Federation of Bodybuilders - Fédération Internationale des Culturistes
(in Montreal, Quebec, Canada)[1]
Location Madrid, Spain
President Dr Rafael Santonja
Chief Exec Pamela Kagan
Secretary William Tierney
Official website

The International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness (IFBB), headquartered in Madrid, Spain, is the international governing body for amateur sports of bodybuilding and fitness and oversees major international events in these sports, notably World and Continental Championships. Also participates in several Regional Games of the Olympic program. IFBB was founded in 1946 by brothers Ben and Joe Weider in Montreal, Canada, under the name International Federation of Bodybuilders. In 2004 changed the name to International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness, but retained IFBB as an abbreviation. Mr. Ben Weider of Canada was the first IFBB President, running the Federation since 1946 till 2006. In 2006 Dr. Rafael Santonja of Spain was elected the second President and the IFBB headquarters was moved to Madrid, Spain. IFBB is a nonprofit legal entity with Constitution, Technical Rules, Anti-Doping Rules and democratically elected Executive Council for four-year terms. The IFBB meets annually at its International Congress, held in conjunction with the Men’s World Bodybuilding Championships. It affiliates 189 National Federations which may also form Continental/Regional Federations. There are the following IFBB affiliated Continental Federations:

  • European Bodybuilding and Fitness Federation (EBFF)
  • Asian Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness (AFBF)
  • Confederación Sudamericana de Fisiculturismo, Fitness e Bodyfitness (CSFF)
  • Central American & Caribbean Bodybuilding Federation (CACBBF)

In 1971, the IFBB became a member of the General Association of International Sports Federations(GAISF), now SportAccord. IFBB was a founding member of the International World Games Association (IWGA)[2] and is a member of the International Council of Sport Science and Physical Education (ICSSPE)[3], the International Pierre de Coubertin Committee and the International Council of Coach Education (ICCE). IFBB is a signatory to the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Code.[5]


The International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness (IFBB) was founded in 1946 in Montreal by brothers Ben and Joe Weider. The two founding countries were Canada and the United States of America. Since that time IFBB had been gradually growing to reach 40 member countries in 1959. The next 10 years were very successful for the IFBB and its president Ben Weider as the number of affiliated countries raised to 90 in 1959. Nevertheless, the organization had no legal entity until December 30, 1969 when Ben Weider founded the International Federation of Bodybuilders Incorporated - Fédération Internationale des Culturistes Incorporée. Having 90 national members IFBB could apply for the membership in the General Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF) what was approved in 1971. Obtaining the GAISF membership, IFBB became the only official representative of bodybuilding, recognized by the world sport authorities and governments. In 1998 IOC granted the IFBB a temporary recognition; however, after election of a new IOC Board in 2001 a new system of granting recognitions has been introduced and all temporary recognitions were canceled. In 2004 the IFBB Professional Section was legally separated from the IFBB and formed an independent IFBB Professional League, which governs all physique sports at the professional level. In 2006, after 60 years of successful leadership, Ben Weider resigned from the presidency of the IFBB and Dr. Rafael Santonja from Spain was elected the new president, being reelected in 2010 for the second term.

The IFBB is recognized by the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA), the Supreme Council for Sport in Africa, the Association of Pan-American Sport Federations (ACODEPA). The IFBB is also recognized by some 90 National Olympic Committees. The IFBB participates in several Regional Games that are recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC): Central American Games, South American Games, Asian Beach Games, Arab Games, Bolivarian Games and will be present at the 1st European Games in 2015 in Baku, Azerbaijan. The IFBB is a signatory to the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Code and its anti-doping rules are in compliance with the 2013 WADA Code. The IFBB promotes a fit healthy lifestyle and actively discourages the use of alcohol, tobacco and drugs.


The IFBB holds competition at the World Championships level for juniors, seniors and masters in various physique sport disciplines: men’s bodybuilding, men’s classic bodybuilding, men’s and women’s fitness, men’s and women’s physique, women’s bodyfitness, women’s bikini fitness, mixed pairs, children fitness, mixed pairs, men’s wheelchair bodybuilding. Rules for all types of sanctioned competitions are established in bylaws and published. [2]

Men's Physique

In 2011 the NPC/IFBB added a new category to their competitions known as the men's Physique division. Unlike men's bodybuilding, the men's physique division looks for a more athletic, aesthetic physique rather than the mass monsters of the bodybuilding category. With the addition to this category, the NPC/IFBB have increased the number of competitors every year since the addition of the new category. In the men's physique division, competitors take to the stage in board shorts rather than the tiny posing trunks worn by bodybuilders. The competitors usually have about 15 seconds to hit 3-5 poses while on the stage. They are judged on proportions, aesthetics and conditioning. In 2013 the men's physique division was added to the Olympia competition and Mark Anthony was crowned as the very first men's physique Mr. Olympia champion.


From the 1980s to his death in 2008, IFBB president Ben Weider petitioned the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for inclusion of bodybuilding in the Olympic Games. On January 30, 1998, the IFBB received the IOC temporary recognition; however, after election of a new IOC Board in 2001 a new system of granting recognitions has been introduced and all temporary recognitions were canceled. The IFBB unsuccessfully petitioned the summer Olympic Games organising committee to demonstrate the sport at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece.

See also

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  1. ^ IFBB, "Ben" (accessed 2012-03-23)
  2. ^ IFBB Pro Rules

External links