International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness

About The IFBB

The history of the IFBB from 1946 till the present time

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.

Over the next 69 years, the IFBB would grow to include National Federations from 191 countries. The current IFBB President is Dr. Rafael Santonja, from Spain, who was elected in 2006, and re-elected in 2010 and in 2014 at the IFBB World Congress in Brasilia.

In 1969, the IFBB became a member of the General Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF), now SportAccord. The IFBB is also affiliated with the International Council of Sport Science and Physical Education (ICSSPE), the International Pierre de Coubertin Committee, the World Games (IWGA) and the International Council of Coach Education (ICCE).

The IFBB is recognized by the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) and the Association of Pan American Sport Federations (ACODEPA).

The IFBB is also recognized by some 90 National Olympic Committees. The IFBB participates in the World Games and several Regional Games that are recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC): Central American Games, South American Games, Arab Games, Asian Beach Games, Bolivarian Games and will be as invited sport at the 1st European Games.

The IFBB is a Signatory to the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Code and its anti-doping rules are in full compliance with the 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 Men’s Bodybuilding and Classic Bodybuilding, Men’s and Women’s Physique, Men’s and Woman’s Fitness as well as Women’s Bodyfitness and Bikini Fitness. Competitions are also held at the Continental, Regional and National levels.

The IFBB has produced many physique stars; the most notable being Arnold Schwarzenegger (the “Terminator”), Lou Ferrigno (the “Incredible Hulk”), Steve Reeves (the “Hercules”), Bollywood movie star Varinder Singh, Arab movie star El-Shahat Mabrouk, “Cirque de Soleil” performer Alevtina Titarenko and many others.

The IFBB is a not-for-profit international amateur sport governing body with a democratically elected Executive Council. The IFBB meets annually at its International Congress, held in conjunction with the Men’s World Amateur Bodybuilding Championships.

The history continues…

IFBB today

Dr. Santonja was re-elected for the second term at the 2010 IFBB International Congress in Baku, Azerbaijan,and for the third term at the 2014 IFBB International Congress in Brasilia, Brazil.

The IFBB currently has 191 affiliated nations and is one of the largest and most active international sport federations in the world.


• Holds competition in the eleven following competitive sports: men’s bodybuilding, men’s classic bodybuilding,men’s fitness, men’s physique, women’s physique,women’s body-fitness, women’s bikini fitness, women’s fitness, mixed pairs, children fitness, men’s wheelchair bodybuilding.

• Organizes more than 2.000 local, national, regional, continental and world championships each year.

• According to the statistics, over 100 million people regularly train in gyms and fitness centres on six continents.

• Supplies the video from its World and major Continental Championships to the major TV companies worldwide.

• receives 15 million hits each month from over 180 countries around the world.

• IFBB is signatory of the WADA Code, already in full compliance with the new 2015 World Anti-Doping Agency Code.