Reigning five-time Classic Physique Olympia Chris Bumstead is done receiving a hair transplant in Turkey and is back on another podcast. Joining multi-millionaire podcaster Patrick Bet David, Bumstead opened up on his four most influential bodybuilders and assessed the physiques of 1990s-era stars.
In the 1990s, Classic Physique had yet to even be a thought in someone’s head. While fans fondly remembered the golden age of the sport, where health, vibrancy, and fullness were hallmarks of a great physique, times have changed and so have the looks in bodybuilding.
As years passed, mass monsters began to extend their footprint across the IFBB Pro League with names such as Dorian Yates and Ronnie Coleman dominating the landscape. Even though size and mass still play a prevalent role in the Open class today, the Classic Physique division was created in 2016 in hopes of preserving a more aesthetic look on stage.
Over the years, the category has been a massive success, and its popularity has begun rivaling the Open. The reigning champion of the category, Chris Bumstead, has held the throne for the last five years dominantly. Taking a break from his busy schedule, he took a very close look at some of the best talents to come out of the sport during the ’90s.
Classic Physique Great Chris Bumstead’s Biggest Inspirations: Gives Thoughts On 1990’s Bodybuilding Stars
Cbum’s Top 4 Bodybuilder List
When asked about his favorite and most influential bodybuilders, Chris Bumstead revealed these names:
- Berry DeMey
- Flex Wheeler
- Bob Paris
- Ronnie Coleman
First, Cbum gave his thoughts on Shawn Ray’s physique and mentioned that he might struggled to make the weight limit for Classic Physique if he competed in the division today.
“I think he had a beautiful Classic Physique for sure, I don’t even think he’d make the weight limit for Classic anymore honestly because he was a little shorter. Great lines, great physique, he had that small waist, he had that very symmetrical physique.
My physique, I have to pose to make it look more symmetrical and give the illusion, he can stand straight on, the more straight on you can hit every pose no angles or anything shows you that you’re not hiding anything it’s just perfect,” said Bumstead.
“I don’t know if he’d make weight. I think he’d be a little heavier. He looks like a lot bigger than a lot of the guys right now than you see in Clasisc.”
According to Bumstead, a lot of competitors in the 90s had Olympia-winning physiques but were denied due to special talents such as former eight-time Mr. Olympia champ Ronnie Coleman.
“Again, all these guys from this era were the guys who didn’t win the Olympia in this era, it was just the wrong time they were around some great people A lot of these guys if you spread them through time they would have won some Mr. Olympias in their own ways but they were all up against crazy competitors. They are all great physiques.”
“It is hard to compare a lot of these pictures because back then there was a little bit of different look. In this era, they were still just as lean, cameras were a little different sometimes you watch the old videos that were a little grainy and it makes them look more grainy. It’s hard to compare now with 4K cameras and everything, it’s different. This is one of those guys that looked amazing. I think this is peak Open size.”
“If Open had stopped around that cap rather than keep pushing those limits. And it’s difficult because someone like Ronnie Coleman came around and he can hold 300 pounds and still look aesthetic, he’s a one-of-one, you know,” said Coleman.
When inspecting Sergio Oliva’s physique, Bumstead underlined that “The Myth” possessed possibly the smallest waist-to-arm ratio of any competitor in the history of the sport.
“I mean also a great physique. I think this was back in the era when they were a little bit less dry and a little bit less lean, which I know a lot of people also liked. It’s a little bit healthier as well.
Everything progresses, every sport you see continually progresses so it’s hard to say that anyone would still appreciate looking at someone who isn’t quite as lean. Amazing physique. He had one of the smallest waist-to-arm ratios anyone has ever had,” said Chris Bumstead.
Taking a closer look at his teammate Hadi Choopan, Bumstead had only nice things to say about the Iranian native’s training intensity.
“I love Hadi. What I love about him is he trains like an absolute animal this is why a lot of people love him. He’s coached by Hany [Rambod].”
“He doesn’t speak English he speaks Farsi and he’s also kind of deaf, he’s very non-verbal communication but makes fun of me teasing makes jokes, then it’s time to do sets, he gets all serious, puts two more plates on, Hany tells him not to go that heavy and he puts another plate and just goes balls to the walls.”
Bumstead agreed with Patrick Bet David that even if someone uses steroids, they won’t be able to achieve a physique as sculpted as Serge Nubret without extreme dedication to diet and exercise.
“Nope [steroids won’t make you look like that]. Which is funny because they call Classic Physique sometimes more attainable when realistically, the more genetic freaks out there that you can’t get.”
“You know 300 pounds versus 220 pounds,” said Bumstead.
As for Flex Wheeler, Chris Bumstead admits his statuesque physique served as one of his early inspirations as a bodybuilder.
“He’s a good guy and definitely one of the physiques I looked at and was like this is it.”
This wasn’t the first Patrick Bet David had some very intriguing bodybuilding nuggets to offer the community. Speaking on Bradley Martyn’s Raw Talk Podcast, PBD revealed that not only did he make an offer to buy the Mr Olympia brand back in 2020 but so did the megastar Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson alongside Danny Garcia. The business deal fell through, but PBD insists the Mr. Olympia brand made a mistake not letting Johnson purchase the company over Jake Wood.
Believe it or not, the entrepreneur had a lot more to say about the sport while conversing with Bradley Martyn. He mentioned, just like Arnold Schwarzenegger has brought up, that the Classic Physique champion at Olympia should be awarded the Men’s Open Mr. Olympia title.
Moreover, PBD called for unprecedented changes to how physiques are judged, hinting that a data set would help to determine who possesses the most balanced and evenly symmetrical features.
With Cbum expecting a baby in 2024, there’s no telling what his life’s next chapter will entail, but fans hope to see him step on a bodybuilding stage at least one more time before sailing off into retirement.