‘Femme Flex Friday’ Takes a Deep Dive Into Wellness


One of the goals of Femme Flex Friday was to educate bodybuilding and fitness fans about topics relevant to the women’s side of the sport. One topic that has had a lot of mystery and excitement surrounding it is the Wellness division. That excitement grew by leaps and bounds when it was announced that the new category would be added to the 2021 Olympia.

“FFF” co-hosts Alina Popa and Whitney Jones dedicated this week’s episode to that topic, and they had on two guests that are well associated with Wellness: IFBB Pro Anne Luise Freitas and coach Ricardo Pannain.

Many people credit Brazil as the birthplace of Wellness because of how many athletes from that part of the world have such well-developed lower bodies. Both of them shared that this was because of how easy it is to improve the glutes and legs.

“With time, the girls started recognizing the value of training the upper body, but for our body type it’s much easier for us to develop (the) lower body.”

Pannain gets asked for help to prepare athletes for Wellness by a lot of women. Popa asked him about the potential that many of these clients have before they started working together. He explained that he is open and honest about the journey that may lie ahead.

“Of course you can, but you have to train hard every week, you have to do physical things to put on the size that it takes, of course,” he said.

Freitas is familiar with the struggle that came with having a “Wellness” type physique in bodybuilding. She competed in Figure in the early 2000’s, but struggled due to an overpowering lower body. After being told by judges to move up to bodybuilding, she would win the women’s bodybuilding world championship in 2009 to turn pro.

“I had great overall conditioning at that show, but even then, my legs were still much larger than my upper body,” she told Popa. “It was when I started emphasizing upper body a lot that I got better. My conditioning had always been great.”

Conditioning is one topic that confuses many athletes and fans interested in this new division. Jones asked about the type of conditioning that is necessary to win at the pro level.

“You have to find the right conditioning. You can’t be over conditioned. Of course, the more muscle you put in the lower body and you get conditioned, you have to have those details,” Pannain stated through Freitas who was translating. “You have to have muscle to show those nice glutes, nice hams, you know. This is something that sometimes clients come to us like ‘I want to compete three months from now.’ It’s not possible. You have to work properly.”

This is only a sample of the wealth of information that was shared in this episode of Femme Flex Friday. Watch the episode in its entirety over at www.wingsofstrength.net.

Alexa Stimp and Margaret Chin on Femme Flex Friday

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