Forget about the morphotypes!

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If the decision to get started on bodybuilding or to start a regimen is made, you will soon hear about morphotypes. It is a widely transmitted concept in the field of bodybuilding that will allow you to place yourself in a certain morphological category to tell if you have the innate abilities for bodybuilding or if, on the contrary, no matter how hard you try, you will never gain a single muscle.

Morphotypes are so important in bodybuilding that some exercises or regimens base their principles on them.

What are morphotypes ?

A morphotype is a set of physical characteristics related to genetics that would define an individual.

In bodybuilding, morphotypes refer to the classification of the American psychoanalyst Sheldon.

Based on his observations, three morphotypes were kept: the ectomorph, the endomorph and the mesomorph.

The ectomorph: it is characterised by narrow shoulders, a narrow pelvis, a rectangular face, a rectangular trunk, long limbs, a fine bone structure, fragile joints and a poorly developed musculature. The ectomorph would have some difficulties in gaining muscle mass and weight. However, it would have the facility to remain dry. It would have a fast metabolism.

At the level of character, the ectomorph refers to a nervous and shy personality.

The endomorph: it is the opposite of the ectomorph. His shoulders are narrow and drooping. His face is round and his silhouette rather squat. Its bone structure is thin and fattens easily.

It is jovial and calm.

The mesomorph: it is the best endowed one by nature. In fact, you already have a very developed musculature. Your shoulders are wide. Your back is V-shaped. Your face is square and your limbs are long. You have the same facility to gain weight as to lose weight. You would have the best morphology to do bodybuilding.

Your are associated with a rather energetic, dynamic, courageous and authoritarian personality.

So, are you rather ectomorphic or endomorphic? Or maybe you fit in the description of the mesomorph?

Not easy to answer? When you were young, you were quite ectomorphic, but as the years go by, are you getting closer to the endomorph? And concerning personality, do you think that the established characteristics are a somewhat crude simplification?

However, some coaches base their training program and regimen on these three morphotypes. So, how to find and, above all, where to place oneself? Where to place oneself?! Now, above anything else, do we really need to refer to these morphotypes?

Do these morphotypes really exist ?

The birth of the notion of morphotypes dates back 75 years ago. Indeed, in 1942, an American psychologist called William Herbert Sheldon decided to classify his patients into three categories, based on simple photographic observations. According to him, our belonging to one morphology and not to another one would be defined in the embryonic stage. We are fat because in the embryonic stage we would have developed too much our digestive system. Conversely, we are skinny because we would have developed our nervous system too much.

This would mean that fat people would not be very intelligent and those who are skinny would be more reflective. These types of shortcuts are really funny. Especially because this approach is not so far from what was exposed in the last century. Supposedly, we can identify future criminals from their morphology: a high forehead, broad extremities, large lips, proportionate eyebrows.

All these theories date back to another era and, fundamentally, are not based on any scientific study.

So, how can we refer to a psychologist of the last century who has no knowledge of morphology or biology to tell if we have the ability or not to gain muscle?

Besides, it is very difficult to gather 100% of the characteristics to belong to fall into one these categories. Everyone is a mixture of all these categories.

Each person is above all UNIQUE.  Being unique is our greatest treasure. We do not resemble anyone but ourselves. Let’s be proud! And let’s forget about the prefabricated stereotypes, with no scientific basis at all.

Each individual evolves according to its own characteristics and, above all, the most wonderful thing is that nothing is predetermined.

And yes, far from the stereotypes that embrace us in the massiveness, the skinny or the muscular guy, we have the chance to change. Look around you! Fat people who change their eating habits and start a sport managed to lose their extra pounds. Others, who had a skinny morphology, became muscular thanks to bodybuilding sessions.

To conclude, there is nothing predetermined. We start with an initial potential, of course, but the evolution of our morphology will depend directly on our environment and, especially, on our lifestyle. Being fat is more often a sign of a diet way too fat, too rich in sugars and a sedentary lifestyle.

From now on, forget about the morphotypes and enough excuses of the type that you are skinny, and you will never get your muscles developed. Your shape will be only a reflection of your regularity and your perseverance in your training. Your shape will reveal your life balance and your diet based on healthy foods. You will realise that you are the number one responsible for your body and your image. Act accordingly …


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