How to Bet on Bodybuilding (Mr. Olympia Competition)

Date:2023-02-22 Category: Sportsbooks
bodybuilding betting guide

This guide on how to bet on bodybuilding will explain how you can make money off of a fitness competition as a spectator. Placing wagers on a Mr. Olympia competition can allow you to get returns by betting on the winners or the top 3 positions. This article provides vital information to get started with betting on bodybuilding. Therefore, it covers some betting sites, betting categories, and essential information about the Mr. Olympia competition.

Please note that this guide focuses specifically on betting on Mr. Olympia competitions. That said, some aspects, such as some betting markets, can apply to other bodybuilding competitions.


The Mr. Olympia Competition Explained

Mr. Olympia is a bodybuilding competition for men, and it’s not about proving who is the strongest. That is to say that competitors do not have to display their strength by lifting heavy weights (such as powerlifting). Instead, it is a competition in which the bodybuilders’ bodies are judged based on their aesthetics.

Therefore, there are judges in the competition that look at various aspects of each contestant. Thus, they look at the muscularity of every contestant by examining each muscle group’s mass and definition with respect to their body’s proportions. The muscle groups include the following.

  • Thighs and calves
  • Abdomen muscles
  • Back muscles
  • Arms muscles, which include the biceps and triceps
  • Chest
  • Shoulder muscles, which include the front, middle, and rear deltoids
  • Neck development
  • Head’s proportions

Therefore, the judges determine the winner based on these factors.


Some of the Best Champions of Mr. Olympia

Some of the best champions of Mr. Olympia include the following.

  • Arnold Schwarzenegger
  • Lee Haney
  • Ronnie Coleman
  • Phil Heath
  • Dorian Yates


Below are the winners from the last 10 years.

Year Winner Nationality
2023 Derek Lunsford United States
2022 Hadi Choopan Iran
2021 Mamdouh “Big Ramy” Elssbiay Egypt
2020 Mamdouh “Big Ramy” Elssbiay Egypt
2019 Brandon Curry United States
2018 Shawn Rhoden Jamaica, United States
2017 Phil Heath United States
2016 Phil Heath United States
2015 Phil Heath United States
2014 Phil Heath United States


Mr. Olympia Betting Made Simple

Below we explain various aspects of Mr. Olympia betting to help you get started with this activity. You can start betting on a Mr. Olympia competition as it nears its release by visiting a betting website known as an online sportsbook. Later in the article, we named some exceptional betting websites in the questions and answers section.


Understanding Betting Markets

You will find various betting markets on a sportsbook, which can vary from one sportsbook to another. However, many have similar betting markets, so we have provided details on some of the most popular ones. Betting markets are categories of bets, which will be clearer when you look at the examples of markets below.


The Winner of Mr. Olympia

This betting market is possibly the most straightforward. You simply need to bet on who the winner of the competition will be, and you’ll get returns if your bet is correct.

Sportsbooks will provide odds for the competitors, which are calculations for the returns bettors will get if they wager on that competitor based on their chances to win. So, typically, a sportsbook will provide much better returns for underdogs than for the favorites. This way, bettors have the incentive to bet on competitors other than the favorites in the hopes of getting better returns. So, higher risk results in greater rewards in this case.

Here’s an example to help explain how odds work.

A betting website may set the odds for two competitors as follows.

  • Competitor A -300
  • Competitor B +400

The odds above indicate that Competitor A is the favorite, meaning he has a higher chance of winning the Mr. Olympia title than Competitor B.

So, if you bet $10 on Competitor B, you will get a return of (10 x 4) $40. On the other hand, betting on the favorite lowers your returns. In that case, you will get $10 if you bet $30 on Competitor A.


The Top 3 Competitors

Every competition will have 3 competitors with the highest scores. So, you can bet on who those 3 competitors will be.


A Specific Competitor Will Be in the Top 3

This type of betting market can be a safe choice for new bettors because you have to pick a competitor who just needs to make it to the top 3—not win the title. So, you have more margin for error because you’re choosing one competitor for 3 spots instead of one (which is the case for betting on the winner).


Whether There Will Be a New Champion

This category can be another safe one because you only need to bet on whether the champion will be different or not from that of the last year. It’s common for competitors to win Mr. Olympia titles consecutively, but if you expect that won’t be the case, you can bet on the winner being different.


Quick Questions and Answers

Below are some quick and essential questions and answers about bodybuilding and betting on it.


How do you qualify for Mr. Olympia?

Here’s a breakdown of the qualification requirements for being able to participate in a Mr. Olympia competition.

  • The top 5 competitors of the previous Mr. Olympia competition get qualified for the next Mr. Olympia competition
  • The top 3 competitors of the other Olympia competitions get qualified for the next Mr. Olympia competition
  • The winners from the qualifying phases get an invitation to qualify for the next Mr. Olympia competition

So, any bodybuilder cannot simply compete in this prestigious event.


Where can you bet on Mr. Olympia?

Betting on bodybuilding events and more specifically, Mr. Olympia competitions is not common on sportsbooks, i.e., online betting websites. However, our top recommended bookies offer lines for Mr. Olympia. These sportsbooks stand out in terms of the betting odds, bonuses & promotions, and the overall customer experience for bettors. So, here are some of the best online sportsbooks for Mr. Olympia betting based on the factors mentioned above and our extensive analysis.

  • Betonline
  • BetUs
  • Bovada


Final Thoughts

It’s crucial to understand that betting on Mr. Olympia is a niche betting community. Therefore, you may not have many people betting on the sport, which may not be the most exciting option for new bettors. On the flip side, because not so many bettors are interested in betting on Mr. Olympia’s competition, you can find value bets at the sportsbooks that offer lines for this event. Hence, if you’re a fan of bodybuilding and the Mr. Olympia competition, use your knowledge paired with your sports betting skills to place winning bets.


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