For those of you who are just beginning your journey through the world of competitive bodybuilding, congratulations! The Ferrigno Legacy team knows how exciting this decision is, but also knows the road you have chosen is one of hard work, sweat, exhaustion, strained muscles, strict diet, and unrivaled discipline. If you are just starting out, you may still be familiarizing yourself with the lay of the bodybuilding and physique landscape, and it can be confusing if you are unsure of what it is you’re looking at. There are two main types of bodybuilding competitions: NPC and IFBB. We will go more in-depth about these divisions in another blog entry, but the main difference you need to know is that the NPC is your way to reach the IFBB, similar to the minor and major leagues of baseball.

If your goals include becoming a professional bodybuilder and creating a livelihood from what you love to do, a pro card is something you will need to acquire. If you don’t know what a pro card is or how you need to go about getting one, we have some tips to help you out.

What is a Pro card?

A pro card is essentially the golden ticket that proves you have put in the work and competed in amateur level competitions and won. You cannot apply for a pro card, nor can you get one by being discovered, or from doing okay in a bodybuilding or physique competition. Rather, you will need to place in the top three of an NPC National Qualifier bodybuilding show. These shows are there to help separate those who are qualified to move up from those who are not.

Essentially, NPC shows are the ones for amateur bodybuilders who think they are ready to compete. In order to obtain a pro card from an NPC Qualifier, you need to finish in the top tier to qualify for certain higher-up competitions. A top 5 finish will qualify you for the North American Championship, along with a few other competitions. A top 3 finish in a national qualifier will allow you to enter into the USA and National competitions.

Wait…There’s More

Now that you’ve qualified for the North American, USA, or National competition, you are one step closer to acquiring your pro card. If you are able to finish in a certain tier or place in one of these competitions you will obtain your pro card…and then the real work can start.

IFBB Competitions

Once you have obtained your pro card, you are officially a professional bodybuilder! Now, you have the opportunity to compete in IFBB competitions to qualify for events where you will be facing off against the best in the world. A pro card is simply the beginning; the work of a professional bodybuilder is never done, but there is always more to strive and compete for.

If you have the fire to compete and show how your dedication and perseverance have paid off, we encourage you to sign up to participate in the Ferrigno Legacy event! Whether you want to come and see what it is all about, or show off on stage and try your hand against your contemporaries. We look forward to seeing you at the next competition!