This week, the focus is on Kevin Chiak. A gym owner, Master Fitness Trainer, FM League/NspireSL Pro Athlete, Founder and President of Fitness Movement League, Mr Singapore 2010, National Bodybuilding Champion (07-10) and Senior Manhunt Winner (96/97). Kevin Chiak is not just an established athlete, but someone who is filled with a burning passion for promoting and developing bodybuilding in Singapore.
As the President and Founder of FITNESS MOVEMENT LEAGUE PTE LTD, a bodybuilding and physique sports promoter company that organises the biggest competitions in Singapore and soon an expansion into the region. We spent some time and understand more about him and the Bodybuilding scene in Singapore.
WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON THE STATE OF COMPETITIVE BODYBUILDING IN SINGAPORE TODAY?
We saw an influx of younger athletes from age 15 to 20 coming into the sport, mainly the physique division. Physique differs from bodybuilding in terms of the look of the physique; where judges look for aesthetic beauty over muscle size. At this point I would like to claim some credit for FM League for this growth when back in 2014 we started the very first all Men’s Physique and Ladies Bikini competition in Singapore and we market it with a tad glamour by naming it Singapore Fitness Model Search. Since then we have also started a sub SFMS competition called Physique War targeted to the younger physique competitor. On April 23rd, we are proud to present the 2nd Physique War boasting over 200 competitors! Get your tickets at http://fmleague.co/sfms/pw2016/
As for the traditional bodybuilding competition, we also saw a growth of 20% and athletes displaying better quality. Last year we witness a record breaking of 5 former Mr. Singapore titleholders vying for Mr. Singapore 2015. Moving forward, we will do bigger competitions in bigger venues and also our expansion into the region namely Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Middle East. We believe this expansion will be synergic to the growth of competitive bodybuilding in Singapore.
TELL US MORE ABOUT FITNESS MOVEMENT LEAGUE?
FM League’s championships are among the best-run in the region. Within Singapore itself, it is self-evident that no competitor comes close. The biggest stage, the best venues, superior planning and organization, creativity and innovation, credibility and honesty, etc., etc. But these are not the things that matter most. Trying to build a world-class this or a fantastic that is not the key focus. Far more important is WHY we do what we do.
FM League’s core belief is simple:
“WE BELIEVE ATHLETES SHOULD BE CELEBRATED AS ROLE MODELS FOR THE COMMUNITY.”
Everything else – our sense of mission, our organization, our policies, our actions – follows from this core belief.
AT WHAT AGE DID YOU BEGIN BODYBUILDING AND WHAT MOTIVATED YOU TO KEEP WITH IT?
I started bodybuilding at the age of 20 years old but was never competitive. Bodybuilding was my building blocks of confidence and it was my way of expressing who I really am. I deemed myself to be a creative, ambitious and determined individual and bodybuilding let me practise building myself physically and mentally. Bodybuilding is a work of art instead of just being a form of exercise. One has to visualise, plan and created the physique that makes him look good if he plans to be competitive. And today my motivation to keep going is being able to make myself feel good all the time and being able to inspire many others into taking up this art and perhaps turning it into their sport.
IN YOUR OPINION, WHAT COULD BE DONE TO BOOST THE POPULARITY AND MARKETABILITY OF COMPETITIVE BODYBUILDING?
Well it is supposed to be our secret formula to outdo our competitor but otherwise here is a tad of it; our philosophy revolves around the athletes. The source of our aspiration and determination is based on our wish to see the sport flourish, we want the athletes to keep improving to eventually match the World top standards and we endeavor to make the sport a sport that other sports would envy us, envy our progress and admire our developments. And in order to achieve that, we want to expand into the region. And being a homegrown organisation to do that would put us on another pedestal. We also have progressively been improving the production of our competition by gearing the concept to appear more show like instead of a straight off competition. Therefore, the stage choreography, theme, music, and lights are instrumental to our show quality. Which is why we have staged our competition in a better-facilitated profession theatre hall.
WE ALL KNOW THE IMPORTANCE OF DIET. COULD YOU DESCRIBE THE NUTRITION PLAN YOU CURRENTLY FOLLOW?
Yes, nutrition is very important. But as I progress into professional bodybuilding, I inclined my nutrition to more from natural source diet. There will not be any lack of fresh food from the usual, meat, fish and dairy products. But more importantly, I have been benefitting my supplementation from Isagenix. ISAGENIX supplements are formulated from natural sources and that not only builds my physique but more importantly cleanse and repair my internal system and improves my general health. Logically speaking what is a nice body without good health.
WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR DIET TIPS?
Fresh food is a must ! And know what supplements you are taking, don’t just take it because some big famous guy or nice sexy lady is on the label. When you shortlist supplements to supply you with nutrition or protein, make sure it is of premium quality. You are paying a lot of money for supplements already, might as well pay slightly more for the real deal. For me, it has to be natural nutrients, nothing less. No anti biotics or pro hormones in the protein shake, please.
WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN YOU ARE NOT AT THE GYM?
Well, I love shopping and I mean shopping and not window-shopping. Otherwise, I just love movies of any genre. I also frequent cafes. I use to have super cravings for coffees but now I have this new passion for tea and I love camomile , jasmine, blueberry..oh the list goes on.
YOU ARE SEEN AS AN INSPIRATION TO MANY BODY BUILDERS OUT THERE, WHO INSPIRES YOU?
Well, I am inspired by many athletes, especially those that I have competed with. Yes you read it right, these athletes are as real as it gets and they are so passionate about the sport and the physique they created is just admirable. Honestly, I am sometimes inspired by someone who is less developed than I am, and being a promoter for the sport I do come across many athletes so I get plenty of inspiration. And guess what, I am back on stage again, and no, not just giving out prizes and making speeches but competing!
WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS IN THE UPCOMING MONTHS?
As a promoter for the sport, we are very busy prepping for this year’s competition. We had done Musclewar 2016, and on April 23rd is our SFMS – Physique War 2016, and in August Mr. Singapore National Bodybuilding Championship 2016 and September SFMS NATIONALS AND AFMS 2016. And for those who don’t know the acronyms used, SFMS is Singapore Fitness Model Search and AFMS is Asia Fitness Model Search. And in 2017, beside this 4 SG annual events mentioned, we will be putting up AFMS in Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Jakarta, and Dubai.
As a competitive bodybuilder, I am pleased to announce that I have turned Pro and competed in NSL Physique Championship at Houston, Texas back on March 12th, 2016. I managed a 2nd placing but I am not pleased with my body condition. Though I was badly injured prior to the competition, when I stand on the stage that’s the body that count, it’s my fault for getting myself hurt. I lost and I will be back for redemption. So the next few months would be lots of hard training and proper dieting.
DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVISE FOR ASPIRING BODYBUILDERS OUT THERE?
I have always said; always choose the right competition for yourself, the right competition would mean the competition is the toughest, the venue of the competition held at a very professional theatre hall with great sound and lights. Why compete in the toughest local competition because it is the best gauge of where you stand locally. If it’s the best competition, you can almost be sure to say you are rank 1st or 2nd or 3rd locally when you win that position. By pitching yourself against the best, then you will know where you need to improve because your weaknesses will surface when you look at the comparisons in the pictures and videos. Some athletes like it the easy way out by joining a weak competition so that they can easily win or place higher. Let me ask you, would you like to score 49 points to be the best in class or would you like to score 90 to be the last in class. You choose.
A big thank you to Kevin for taking time off for this interview. All the best to him and the amazing competitions that Singapore will get to see.