Tans radiated, smiles glistened and bodies rocked: How our students battled it out in attempt to qualify for the Mass Student Physique finals in London this April.
This March saw an array of talent in both the Midlands and Southern SPC Regional qualifiers. More than 100 of the best student physiques flocked from across the country to each show, managing to sell out both Leicester’s O2 Academy and Southampton’s Student Union in celebration of the student athlete. Both heels and standards were set sky high, filling our stages with professionalism, sportsmanship, and a positive example for students everywhere to follow.
Posing was in full force, with Manchester’s medic Sam Parsons and Exeter’s Adam James impressing the judges enough to take home awards for best stage presence of the day. The talent displayed in the Women’s bikini categories proved particularly hard to judge; finalist Rosie Williams, Serife Ustuner and Liberty Pullen demonstrated incredible presentation skills in the Southern qualifiers, while Nikita Scholes, Holly Couzens and Sarah Baron shone for our Midlands judges.
Emily Wilson & Feyi Oyebode, Midlands regional overall champions
Bournemouth served to be the South’s hottest Uni, gaining overall best team of the day as well as celebrating Tom Vessey’s victory in the Men’s Athletic category. Other successes included George Morgan, Roehampton’s winner in the Men’s Fresher’s category and Nathan Etherington, Plymouth’s short physique victor. Daniel Olusina, former self-confessed “stick-thin” physique, was announced proud winner of both the Men’s Tall and overall Men’s Physique of the day. All praises for the healthy lifestyle, Olusina urges anyone to get involved,
“With hard work, dedication and consistency you can build the body you want!”
Other athletes, who are living proof of the latter, included Midlands overall Men’s champ of the day, Feyi Oyebode and both Women’s bikini winners, Hattie Moran of Westminster and 20 year old Emily Wilson of Coventry.
Each student has undergone an incredible individual journey throughout the SPC process, proving the mental discipline required to compete at this high level. Best friends and gym buddies, Duncan Barry and Jake Sales, demonstrated that physique competitions delve far deeper than surface looks
“It’s changed our mentality towards all aspects of life, and it’s great that we can do it side by side”
Unlike professionals in the industry, the students have had to juggle their rigorous training and nutrition with the hardships of student life. First time competitor, Megan Coldicott, who studies adult nursing at De Montfort University, told us,
“I train twice a day; I start with fasted cardio followed by a weights session later. It’s been hell but so worth it-I’ve never seen my body like this!”
Coventry’s 23 year old Josh Sainsbury-Bow, who gained 2nd place in the Men’s Athletic Category, believes the healthy lifestyle is well worth the time and money
“It can definitely be expensive, but I’ve saved a lot on alcohol!”
When asked to advise other students wanting to compete, Josh Bridgman, winner of the Men’s Physique, insisted,
“Just get out and do it! It’s the best thing you’ll ever do!”
Congratulations to all our inspirational competitors, who proved being a student doesn’t have to mean sleeping all day and drinking all night: we can’t wait to see what you can bring to the championship next year!
By Britta Zeltmann