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Volume 26 No. 112
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New Competition Looks To Break Into Bodybuilding Field

A new fitness league is aiming to modernize the physique and bodybuilding industry, with the goal of taking the competition and its participants more into the mainstream. The league, which will be called the World Physique Championship, is launching in June with a new competition circuit of events across the world. The first event will take place in Miami, with plans for additional events in N.Y. and L.A. Darren Owen, who previously founded and owned Canadian MMA company Aggression Fighting Championship and has promoted fighting events across the globe, is behind the league and will serve as CEO. It has other private investors as well, Owen said. “There is so much potential in the physique industry to take these competitions more into the mainstream, and by giving competitors a better experience and a chance to win prize money, we think there is a real opportunity.” He pointed to the rise of popularity of bodybuilding on platforms like Instagram, where he said there are hundreds of competitive bodybuilders with over 1 million followers. “People are flocking to Instagram to follow these physique fitness professionals -- the time is right to take these steps to modernize the competition around it,” he said.

OPEN TO BOTH MEN AND WOMEN: The events will have competitions for both men and women in a variety of categories like bodybuilding and classic physique. Owen said that anyone could register, and prize payouts will scale by number of entrees. The majority of the entry fee will go to the prize money. Owen said that the organization already has reached out to a few thousand potential competitors and expect to have several hundred compete in Miami. The World Physique Championship will look to scale its events out from there, while adding in live streaming on digital platforms. “We think there is a lot of opportunity where we can bring the physique industry up the standard of other professional sports,” he said.