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Bodybuilding morphotypes

Bodybuilding morphotypes


Can we classify the human body into morphotypes?

The main morphotypes are :

- Ectomorphs: subdivided into 5 subgroups, from level 1 to 5, their physical characteristics are poorly-developed musculature, thin bones and low body fat. Their metabolism is fast, so they need to eat accordingly if they're engaged in muscular activity. Ectomorphs are not strong, so their performance will be limited compared to other morphotypes. They do, however, have the best musculature of the three morphotypes.

- Endomorphs: The physical predispositions of endomorphs are a tendency to make fat easily. Their metabolism is slow and calories are readily stored in adipose tissue, particularly around the stomach and buttocks. Endomorphs can develop considerable strength if they train for it. Diet will be the determining factor in training for people in this physical category.

- Mesomorphs: These are the most powerful physiques. Naturally muscular, they can build muscle mass quickly and efficiently. Mesomorphs are also strong, with massive, solid tendons and bones. However, they need to be careful not to develop physical imbalances and also work on flexibility.

Much has been written about morphotypes. Today, two trends stand out:

- Those who dispute these physical characteristics.

- Those who accept the division of these physical characteristics into three dominant groups: ectomorphs, endomorphs and mesomorphs.

The first category does not accept the idea of classifying individuals into sub-groups, and maintains that we can all reach the heights of competitive physiques.

What's more, the simplistic categorization into three tendencies doesn't allow everyone to find their way around.

Finally, there's a certain determinism, which doesn't encourage people to surpass themselves.

However, we must admit that the observations of William Sheldon, psychologist in the 1940s and observer of the human physique, seem logical, and new observations confirm the existence of people with "naturally" different characteristics.

This natural notion can be defined by genetics. The predisposition of some to build muscle more easily, or others on the contrary will have great difficulty putting on weight because of a rapid metabolism. The notions of innate (genetics) and acquired (environment) are therefore at odds with each other.

The truth lies somewhere between the innate and the acquired, with certain genetic factors facilitating or, on the contrary, hindering progress in bodybuilding. On the other hand, it is possible to combat these genetic predispositions through diet, physical activity and, more generally, the environment that surrounds us.

We can conclude by saying that your genetic baggage will never completely determine your physique. Some people will need to work harder than others. We're not all equal physically speaking, but these differences can't and shouldn't be used as pretexts or excuses for not achieving your bodybuilding goals.