The 2021 Dubai Muscle Classic, the biggest bodybuilding competition Dubai has ever seen, concluded at Dubai World Trade Centre on Sunday with 309 participants representing 43 nationalities competing for a share of the $20,000 prize purse on offer.
The two-day event, organised in collaboration with Dubai Sports Council and Emirates Bodybuilding Federation, saw competition across nine categories with both men and women taking part, and the sessions were streamed live on YouTube where more than to 42,000 viewers tuned in across two days.
However, there were no fans in attendance at Dubai World Trade Centre as the organisers, in line with ongoing government guidelines, decided to hold the competition without public attendance.
“We are committed to following all government guidelines and advice to ensure the safety of our competitors and the wider public,” the organisers said in a statement.
“As organisers, our business model includes the ability to sell tickets to attendees, but we understand and appreciate the training and dedication that our athletes go through to prepare for a competition. As such, a postponement of the event would not have been fair to them.
“We hope local bodybuilding fans understand the situation, and we look forward to welcoming them back to a show in the future when we are able to accommodate them.”
One of the participants was India’s Naveen Chanda Kulkarni, who had flown in from the central Indian city of Nagpur for the Dubai Muscle Classic.
A regular at Mr Olympia in Las Vegas as the prestigious Arnold Classic in Melbourne, Australia, Kulkarni took part in the demanding Men’s Physique category, where the prime requirement for a contestant is to display proper shape and symmetry, along with muscularity and good overall condition.
Talking about his experience, Kulkarni told his hometown newspaper, Lokmat: “The magnitude of these events is so huge that they always help. Moreover, one gets to interact with like-minded people, share experiences and also learn about the latest trends and techniques in the global health and fitness industry.”