Muscles and height correlation in bodybuilding
There is a popular opinion that tall guys have a huge disadvantage when it comes to building muscle size. Are muscle size and height really so tightly related? Have tall guys a problem in bodybuilding? The answer is not very straight forward and might surprise quite a few of you.
So what’s better for natural bodybuilding, short or tall?
First of all let’s have a look why many gym users think that big height is disadvantageous in building solid, muscular physique (not big-fatty physique). Let’s use an example of two skinny gym newbies of different heights who are friends, follow the same training routine and use the same dieting principles. Let’s say they have trained for couple months and the shorter beginner has gained 3 kg of lean muscle while the taller one – 4 kg. The taller guy is quite disappointed as the shorty looks a little thicker. It’s the damn height! The situation might be even worse for the “skyscraper” if he actually gains even less weight than the “lucky” short friend. So what’s the deal? It seems that bigger height is an obvious negative here. Not so fast, let’s break the situation down. So similar gains for both guys look different because the same amount of meat on a longer bone looks skinnier. Also, if there is a lack of basic understanding about dieting, the taller example might be short of calories. The bigger your lean body weight is, the more calories you need. Ok, let’s presume the calorie question is sorted out. Is there any way shorty is in a disadvantageous position here? Yes there is, no doubt. The most powerful genetic type is mesomorph. 100 % mesomorph is a giant (even if there is no muscle put on) – tall, big chin, thick wrists, ankles, fingers and great natural athletic abilities due to dominant fast twitch muscle fibres with great potential for hypertrophy. Can such a man look skinny? Off course. If he doesn’t lift weights and/or has insufficient diet then our mesomorph will be skinny one. Big height will only highlight that. However, if our big fellow gets enough nutrients and stays consistent with his bodybuilding training and dieting, the shorty can only look up and envy. In a long term (we don’t expect game changing results in two months right?) tall mesomorph has all the pluses he can wish for:
Tall and thick skeleton indicates a very high potential of total muscle gain in 3-5 years of natural bodybuilding – 25-30 kg, while the shorty 15-20 kg;
Fast twitch muscle fibres make the gains faster and again raise the overall potential of lean muscle gains;
Sure, there are some tall people who are not exactly mesomorphs (there are many mixtures of mesomorph, endomorph and ectomorph genetic types). However, talking from my experience, most of proper tall guys are mesomorphs. I helped many giants to realise their truly amazing potential, despite their very strong conviction about poor luck in genetics lottery. If you are still doubting these facts, just look at NBA – it is loaded with tall and thick-muscled centre and power forwards.