You truly appreciate the beauty of the human body when you start figure drawing. Instead of seeing nude figures in a sexual light, figure drawing makes you see the beauty of the expressive curves and structures of the human form.
During my figure studies, I first drew out a rough sketch of a skeleton to plumb the mid lines and joints. Then, I focused on proportions. The body is measured eight heads and the hands and feet should be the size of the face.
I have a lot of trouble with proportions so I've learned to mark my paper in half horizontally (or hamburger style) to mark the pelvic, then eight sections to ensure a close to perfect proportion.
Then start constructing each part of the body out of reticular prisms. It is a geometric approach that allows you to study the different complex volumes of the human form and gives the opportunity to think constructively on pinpointing the midlines and bone structures.