New Delhi, 19th June 2023:- The International Health, Sports, and Fitness Festival (IHFF), Asia’s biggest event in the fitness world concluded in grand style on June 18 at New Delhi’s Pragati Maidan. The high points of the three-day mega festival were the Steadfast Nutrition Pro Show in Association with Sheru Classic- Asia’s biggest bodybuilding event, and the Sheru Classic Pro Qualifiers- among India’s biggest bodybuilding championships, presented by Steadfast Nutrition, the country’s fastest-growing sports and wellness nutrition brand. The pro show, a milestone event for Indian bodybuilding and the second-ever in India gave its four winners a direct entry into the Mr Olympia USA- the world’s most prestigious bodybuilding tournament; the Sheru Classic Pro League Qualifiers is a stepping stone for amateur bodybuilders to enter the pro or professional circuit, enabling them to earn prize money and win endorsements. 600 athletes from India and abroad converged at Pragati Maidan for the tournaments, which has given a big boost to the sport of bodybuilding in India, providing Indian athletes with a global stage to showcase their prowess.
“By sponsoring these events, Steadfast Nutrition wants to reach closer to its goal of making India the world’s sports capital by 2050. This is the second time that a pro show is being organised in India. The Steadfast Nutrition Pro show in association with Sheru Classic has made competing in the Mr Olympia easy- four winners will get a direct entry to the world’s ultimate bodybuilding tournament. We’re determined to give an opportunity to more sports to thrive in the country and make bodybuilding legitimate and mainstream. Currently, only cricket, football, and hockey dominate the discourse around sports- bodybuilding is neglected even though it is becoming increasingly popular among the youth. By sponsoring the pro show and the Sheru Classic Pro Qualifiers, we want to give our talented youth opportunities to compete professionally at the national and international level,” says Aman Puri.
In attendance at the event were several celebrities from the fitness and TV industry, including legendary American bodybuilder Flex Wheeler, bodybuilding icon Kai Greene, iconic American coach and pro bodybuilder Dennis James Vlad, Cuban-American bodybuilder Sergio Jr, son of legendary bodybuilder Sergio Oliva, social media sensation Just Sul, singer Sukbir, and Rannvijay Singha, a popular face on television.
The pre-judging and pro-show finals took place on the last day. Only pro card holders (professional athletes) were eligible to compete in the pro show. The winners vied for the trophy in four categories: Men’s Physique, Men’s Classic Physique, Women’s Bikini, and 212 Bodybuilding. Andrei Melnikov from Russia won in the Men’s 212 category, Vahid Badpei from Iran won in the Men’s Classic Physique segment, Bhuwan Chauhan from India won the Men’s Physique segment, while Thailand’s Jil Meret Schmitz won the Women’s Bikini segment.
Athletes faced off for nine pro cards in the Sheru Classic in eight categories: 212 bodybuilding, Men’s Physique, Men’s Classic Physique, Men’s Bodybuilding, Women’s Bikini, Women’s Figure, Women’s Fitness, and Women’s Wellness. The championships were open to athletes worldwide- 70% of Indian athletes and 30% of international athletes participated.
Sunmeet Singh Gill and Parmeshwar Sharma from India won the pro card in the Men’s Classic Physique category, Arsand Basheer Mohd Hama from Iraq won the pro card in Men’s Bodybuilding, Reeta Devi from India won the pro card in the Women’s Wellness category, Doaaf Alah from Iraq won in the Women’s Physique category, Jahanara Islam from India won the pro card in the Women’s Figure category, Dunaescaia Ekaterina won in the Women’s Bikini category.
Besides the Steadfast Nutrition Pro Show in association with Sheru Classic and the Sheru Classic Pro Qualifiers, four other championships that took place at the IHFF included the MMA (Mixed martial arts), kickboxing, arm wrestling, and powerlifting tournaments.
Professional Athletes, fitness Influencers, international brands, and distributors have converged at Pragati Maidan for the IHFF 2023. Over 1000 brands showcased their products at the IHFF, giving a fillip to India’s fitness industry. Over 1.5 lakh spectators thronged the festival across three days.
The Sheru Classic Pro Qualifiers and the Amateur Olympia (which will be held later in the year), sponsored by Steadfast Nutrition are the only championships in India that allow bodybuilding athletes to win pro cards by the International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness (IFBB), which oversees bodybuilding championships across the world.
Steadfast Nutrition has swiftly carved a niche in the sports nutrition industry since it burst onto the scene in 2017. The brand prides itself on its organ-friendly supplements, which have propelled several athletes to medal-winning performances in national and international events, including the Olympics, and enabled numerous people to take proactive measures to improve their health.