Which Heels Should I Wear For Which Federation?

Which Heels Should I Wear For Which Federation?

All Federations have their own specific rules when it comes to suitable footwear for the stage. Knowing what to wear and on what stage is a must. Not only could it affect your placing if you fail to adhere to the rules but it may also play havoc with your headspace and confidence knowing you’re the only one to turn up with the wrong pair of heels.

HIGHER ISN’T ALWAYS BETTER if it means your walk is hindered as a result! The legs look beautiful in high heels, but if you can’t walk out into the center of the stage without looking clumsy, awkward and stable opt for a short more conservative heel. Your overall stage presence and confidence will thank you for it!

Thank you to all the hard working Promotors whom took that time to chat with me with regards to this question.

NOTE: Be sure to enquire with your chosen federation before each show for the most up to date information.

High Heels according to the WBFF

“In line with the WBFF brand, competitors are strongly encouraged to choose a style of shoes that compliment themselves and competition wardrobe. Clear stilettos are no longer a part of the competition attire. The WBFF Organization prefers a shoe style that is more stylish and classy.”

Quote taken direct from the WBFF Australian website as of 16.5.19

From my own observations, many WBFF competitors incrust their heels with the same crystals and diamantes as they do their costumes. They complement their shoes to their outfits often matching colours and styles. High heels can range from peep toe, to open toe boots, ankle straps to roman lace-up sandal styled heels. The variety is endless.

High Heels according to the IFBB Pro League

I personally had some input into the latest Australian website image for preferred heels on an IFBB Pro League stage, as there were some grey areas initially. The image is simple and self-explanatory.

Image taken direct from the IFBB Pro League Australia Website as of 16.5.19

High Heels according to the IFBB Elite

“High heel shoes must be worn, but platform soles are not permitted. The colour and style of the shoes will be the competitors own choice”

Quote taken direct form the IFBB Australia website as of 16.5.19

High Heels according to the PCA

“Shoes can be of any style but must not be of an obvious platform sole & should have a maximum of 5-inch heel.”

Quote taken direct from the PCA International Website as of 16.5.19

High Heels according to the ICN

The ICN do not place great restrictions on the type of footwear the athletes can wear. Their approach is to ensure the athlete is free to express themselves on stage in their own unique way. They can choose the height and style of heels to suit their look and comfort giving them the flexibility to be themselves.

From my own observations, the most commonly worn high heels in ICN tend to be of a low to moderate platform, averaging 4-6inches that are predominately clear with conservative silver diamante decorations.

High Heels/Shoes according to the INBA/PNBA

“Clear heels are to be worn for both rounds (Figure). Can either be slip-on style or with straps. Heel no higher than 5 inches. Sole no higher than 1.5 inches.”

Sportswear Shoes for Sports Model Women and Men

“Women and Men are to wear white rubber sole sports shoes.”

High Heels according to the NABBA/WFF

I spoke with Daniel Lancefield about this directly, below was his response to me.

“Footwear for Figure and Bikini is the standard commonly seen clear heels. We don’t prescribe any particular height or style. We suggest competitors wear what is most comfortable.

Footwear for the women’s sports model is fashionable and clean runners/trainers. Some ladies opt for a heeled sneaker shoe, Adidas and Nike tend to sell popular heeled sneaker versions. It’s a matter of individual style and comfort. NABBA/WFF want competitors to feel comfortable and confident when they get on stage”

High Heels according to the WNBF

“High-heeled shoes are required.”

Quote taken direct from the Judging Criteria page of the World Natural BB Website as of 4.6.19

I’m waiting to hear back from the WNBF to determine exactly how strict on the style/type of heels the women can wear. According to my own research, based on pictures from previous shows, the trend seems to be reasonably conservative height, clear style heels only. I am yet to see a big variation.

I’ll update you all once I know further details.

High Heels according to the ANB

I spoke with Jen Nohra from the ANB who assured me the Federation is very open minded and accepting of various stage footwear styles. Essentially, it’s up to the athlete in terms of colour, style and height. The majority of the female categories tend to be heavily dominated, but not limited to, the regular clear, modestly decorated heel.

The Theme wear round sees the most diversity as athletes select shoes that complement their theme wear. You will see athletes sporting a range of flat soled trainers to elegant, fashionable heels plus everything in between.

High Heels according to the NBA

I had a good chat to Stuart O’Brien from Natural Bodybuilding Australia over the phone about this. This federation encourages stress free, easy competition preps. This means when setting rules for high heels they have opted for a relaxed approach. Preferred high heels are totally clear with little to no platform at a height that allows the competitor total confidence and control whilst walking. Stu assured me that competitors would NOT be turned away if they decide to wear platform shoes, encrusted with diamantes for example.

At Natural Bodybuilding Australia the emphasis is on the physique and ease of the competitors’ stage presence NOT the shoes, therefore a heel that is simple and lets the physique do the talking is the trend!

High Heels according to the ABF

I spoke with Yvette Perret, she added that the style and colour of heels would be of the competitor’s own choice however most competitors still choose to wear the tradition clear heels.

“High heel shoes are to be worn with a small platform sole. The colour and style of the shoes will be the competitors own choice.”

Quote taken direct from the Australian Bodybuilding Federation Website (categories section) as of 4.6.19

High Heels according to NATBOD

Any kind of stage heel is acceptable for the female Bodyshaping and Bodybuilding Categories. There’s plenty of flexibility within this Federation for sports sneakers/trainers for female Bodysculpting as well.

NATBOD allow for different styles, colours and heel heights. Nothing is particularly strict as athletes competing on the NATBOD stage are welcomed regardless.





Also in Posing Blog

When should I start practicing my posing?
When should I start practicing my posing?

Posing for most is an after-thought when preparing for a competition. Most preps are consumed by weight-training, cardio, juggling family, friends, trying to function at work and making time for meal prep. Sadly posing is something that receives very little attention.
Read More
Active Federations & Categories within Australia
Active Federations & Categories within Australia

Navigating Australian based federations can be very difficult, not only for a first-time competitor but for coaches and seasoned athletes alike. 

With approximately 13 federations actively operating within Australia with and excess 114 categories to choose from, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and completely lost.
Read More