Cifra injects new blood into bodybuilding scene

 THE future of any sport is with the young athletes coming up the ranks eager to make their name and scale new heights.

John Andrew Cifra is among the
modern breed of bodybuilders who
have adopted scientific training
methods in order to succeed in their

With this in mind local bodybuilding is certainly secure with the likes of John Andrew Cifra and Gerald Pangan traveling abroad to make their mark in several international bodybuilding competitions.

Cifra visited the middle east to compete in high level bodybuilding tournaments and continued to gain more than experience. He won third place in Open Weight in the 2012 Fujairah Classic.

Last year he placed second in 100 kg category of the Kuwait Amateur Mr. Olympia. He capped his middle east sojourn by winning the 100 kg category of the past Bahrain Amateur Mr. Olympia.

Similarly successful is Pangan another local bodybuilder who traveled abroad to better hone his craft. Pangan was a finalist in the 2012 Qatar Golden Cup Finalist. Because of his good showing abroad he has also been featured in international bodybuilding magazines like Musclemag, RepsMagazines, Flex Magazines. He was the first Filipino model of MuscleGallery. He plans to compete in the FIBO Germany this coming April.

Building huge muscles used to be the name of the bodybuilding game. But the sport has evolved to so much more and now also demands so much more from its athletes.

It is now not even called just bodybuilding anymore. The proper term for a bodybuilder is a fitness professional. Because to build the huge muscles to the extreme sizes of modern bodybuilders it is no longer enough to just work out, you have to be aware of nutrition, flexibility and yes most importantly rest and recovery.

Bodybuilding has seeped into the life of modern man that it is now a given -- not just for athletes and weekend warriors but for just about anyone who wants to stay fit – to lift weights.

Name a sport – from bowling, to basketball, to tennis, and even golf – and no doubt, athletes in that sport at the highest levels invariably lift and work with weights in one form or another.

Everybody knows that bodybuilding is all about building muscle, right? Getting ripped is only done so that spectators and fans alike can see the muscle beneath the skin.

Nowadays even movie stars, like Piolo Pascual, Dingdong Dantes, and even Solenn Heusaff, include gym workouts in their fitness regimen.

But because of the advances in the sport today's bodybuilding champions are truly comic book huge. Bodybuilders like Jay Cutler and Ronnie Coleman are bigger than most of the super heroes in comic books. Lou Ferrigno who played the Hulk in the TV series decades ago would positively look skinny beside Cutler or Coleman.

Today's bodybuilders are pursuing the impossible and succeeding. They are not trying to impress anyone but themselves. They are truly giants of the sport and deserve at least kudos for blazing a trail.

Bodybuilders can be a misunderstood breed. Because of their huge physiques they are mistaken for musclebound, slow ponderous brutes when in fact they are examples of probably near perfect athletes.

A bodybuilding legend like Tom Platz for example looks like he could not touch his toes because of his huge leg muscles. It will probably astound ordinary folk to realize that someone like Platz is such a well-conditioned athlete that he could virtually touch his elbows to the ground.

Building muscle is what bodybuilding is all about. But the sport has evolved to include so many considerations. In order to succeed young bodybuilders like Cifra and Pangan have to aware of the advances in science, nutrition, medicine and health. They have even needed to travel abroad just to find the competition to help them improve in their craft.

Bodybuilding has become more than just working out. It has evolved into a holistic sport and athletes need to be aware of the many different disciplines in order to succeed.



COMMENT DISCLAIMER: Reader comments posted on this Web site are not in any way endorsed by Manila Standard. Comments are views by readers who exercise their right to free expression and they do not necessarily represent or reflect the position or viewpoint of While reserving this publication’s right to delete comments that are deemed offensive, indecent or inconsistent with Manila Standard editorial standards, Manila Standard may not be held liable for any false information posted by readers in this comments section.