In 2018, both high rank bodybuilding prospects Regan Grimes and Cody Montgomery declared that they quit men’s open to try their wings in the Classic Physique division.
The first thought that strikes many fans of pro bodybuilding is that the switch might be that it´s sad because there is something special about no holds barred about bodybuilding, and that holds truth. In addition, these two guys had potential to go far, especially Grimes.
Men’s open is unique because athletes who choose this path are, most of the time, aiming to become the biggest and baddest mo-fos possible and in the end hoping to bring a shredded mass monster physique to make damage on stage and make it into the history books.
When it comes to freak mass mentalities there have been a few out there throughout history. Some of the prime examples are of course Dorian Yates, Ronnie Coleman and Nasser El Sonbaty. Guys who didn’t leave any freakin’ stone unturned when it came to achieving their bodybuilding dreams.
However, as we all know by now, at least those who are free from any delusions, that the cost of aiming to live by a philosophy like that can be devastating. We need to take into account all of the bodybuilders who aimed to become the next Dorian or Coleman but never reached the pro level or even won a local show because they passed away in the name of it.
As an answer to a changing culture, Classic Physique is growing stronger day by day. And the division is spectacular in its own way by displaying a muscular aesthetic physique with a tight midsection as one of the trademarks.
I personally believe that the trend will continue with many other bodybuilders switching in the years to come. I also believe that the largest crowd will come from the gyms, beginners who at one point in time began training to attain a muscular physique which eventually lead them into wanting to compete. In other words, those who became bodybuilders back in the day because there were no other options. Many of these contemporary examples will choose Classic Physique instead. I don’t blame them.
Ok, when someone has the right wood work to become a super bodybuilder in the open division and has a great mindset including hard and disciplined work outs, and who works with someone who knows what to take and not to take, the risks might be worth taking. There might be a bit of history in the making there.
But for the rest and for those who have aesthetic structures from the start, they should probably choose Classic Physique. Of course, one must also consider the health situation. Everyone realizes what it takes to become a really good Classic athlete. This division requires gear as well, but not to the extreme extent as the men’s open division. Remember that this relates to the general group and not to single cases.
Another thing that I have seen as the big boys flee is a lot of hate from both gurus and other athletes as well. But it’s just plain evil to jump on guys who are barely around 25 years old because of their choice to move to the new division after the industry has seen what’s been going on with large numbers of people who have already died in the name of bodybuilding.
How anyone can’t respect these guys’ decision after all that happened is quite disgusting.
In addition to the debate and all the guys who bashed Classic Physique and said that they are taking the easy way out, I believe that’s exaggerated. That’s because I can guarantee you that not one of these guys would have trouble training next to a Chris Bumstead or a Arash Rahbar, both when it comes to lifting hard and heavy in the gym plus doing athletic trails. I also think that many open bodybuilders should be happy that Bumstead isn’t competing against them on stage. He could easily beat a lot of them if he wanted to.
It is also important to understand that many haters are so geared up mentally that they can’t think clearly. They are being affected by the dark forces of the bodybuilding culture such as a few media channels and gurus out there who blame all the deaths in the later decades solely on genetics which means they think it’s a bodybuilder’s own fault that he died. According to these evil characters, it’s always the genetics, never the drugs.
In the end, it´s pathetic to look down on Classic Physique. After all, they get attention and get cover after cover on the largest bodybuilding mags in the world. They are also attracting more and more people to the industry, both fans and guys who want to become competitors themselves.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the last Classic Olympia was epic for god’s sake. Bumstead and Breon Ansley became really big names after that show and also helped to make Classic Physique grow another notch for the future. I Live in Sweden and I see guys in my gym who have stolen parts of Bumstead’s lumberjack fashion and hairstyle. They are also hitting the same poses… and they look good and seem to be happy and healthy.
And this division has only been around for 2 – years! Praise it for god’s sake, praise it! Accept it or buy anti-depressants, because this golden boy of the industry has only begun, that´s for sure.