1946 – 2011

The International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness (IFBB) was founded in 1946 in Montreal by the brothers Ben and Joe Weider. The two founding countries were Canada and the United States of America. In the next 60 years, the IFBB grew further to the current number of 199 countries (2018).

In 2006, after a successful 60-year presidency, Ben Weider transferred the chairmanship of the IFBB and Dr. Rafael Santonja from Spain was elected president.

In 1971 the IFBB became a member of the General Association of International Sports Associations (GAISF). In 1981 the IFBB participated in the first World Games as a founding member of the International World Games Association (IWGA). The IFBB also cooperates with the International Council of Sports Sciences and Physical Education (ICSSPE), the International Pierre de Coubertin Committee and the International Sports Press Association (AISP).

World recognition

The IFBB is recognized by the Olympic Committee of Asia (OCA) and the Head Committee of Sport in Africa. The IFBB is also recognized by around 90 National Olympic Committees. The IFBB participates in the following Regional Games, which are recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC): Southeast Asian Games, Asian Games, Central American and Caribbean Games, Arab Games, South Pacific Games and African Games.

Growth, anti-doping and celebrities

 The IFBB has signed the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) regulations. The IFBB promotes a healthy lifestyle and actively discourages the use of alcohol, tobacco and drugs. The IFBB organizes competitions at national and international level for juniors, seniors and masters in men’s and women’s bodybuilding, classic bodybuilding for men, fitness for men and women and body fitness for women. Contests are also organized on a continental, regional and national level. In various countries there are also competitions for the participation of wheelchair athletes.

The IFBB has produced many stars with a striking physical, of which the most famous are Lou Ferrigno (the “incredible Hulk”) and governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (the “Terminator”). The IFBB is an international, non-profit governance body with a democratically elected board of directors. The IFBB meets annually at its International Congress, held during the World Amateur Bodybuilding Championships for Men.
The history goes on …

IFBB now

ifbb 2015

International Chairman: Dr. Rafael Santonja, Spain, elected during the international IFBB congress in 2006 in Ostrava, Czech Republic and re-elected Baku, Azerbaijan in 2010

Represents 199 member states (2018) and is the sixth largest international sports association in the world. Includes, among others, these seven competitive sports: men’s bodybuilding, women’s bodybuilding, men’s fitness, women’s fitness, classic bodybuilding for men, body fitness for women, bikini fitness and children’s fitness.

Organizes more than 1000 local, international, subcontinental and world championships per year. According to statistics, more than 100 million people regularly train in gyms or fitness centers on five continents. Has the broadcasting rights of the world and major continental championships, broadcast directly by Eurovision to all major TV companies worldwide.

The website www.ifbb.com is visited every month by more than 15 million people worldwide. As a global authority in the field of weight training, the IFBB has an extensive educational course program that provides qualified certification for bodybuilding, fitness, health and sports related individuals with both academic and professional backgrounds.

IFBB in the Netherlands is NBBF

In the Netherlands, NBBF / IFBB Netherlands (Dutch Body Building and Fitness Bond) has been affiliated with the IFBB for more than 30 years. Every year IFBB Nederland organizes various Fitness and BodyBuilding competitions, such as the annual Dutch Championship. A distinction is made between A / B / and C classes. C competition for beginners and rising to the A category, to which the Dutch top athletes belong. The Netherlands has known many national and international successful bodybuilders / fitness athletes, such as Juliette Bergmann (Ms.Olympia), Erika Mes, Berry de Mey and Roellie Winklaar. It has recently been announced that more than 2 million Dutch people are active with Fitness and Bodybuilding training, which shows the increasing popularity of this training form.

IFBB Nederland also sends out participants annually to the European and World Championships, the Arnold Classic amateurs, various International amateur Grand Prix’s, the amateur Mr. Olympia and 4 World Games annually.

IFBB Netherlands is a member of the world federation IFBB and also cooperates with Belgium and Luxembourg in the IFBB Benelux.