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body shapes and bodybuilding

Body Shapes and Bodybuilding

Body Shapes and Bodybuilding

Each one of us has a genetic composition unique to every one of us. From the wrinkle in the corners of our eyes to the general outside physique that makes up our body, it is all different. Body shapes or the figure of a person can vary for each one of us. This can be attributed to different factors, such as individual skeletal structures and the distribution of muscles and fats in our body. These play specific roles in our body shapes.

Attributes in Body Shapes

There are several factors that are important for us to be familiar with when talking about body shapes.

Physiological Attributes

Physiological Attributes
  • Facial features. Males more commonly develops facial bones during the puberty stage. Females, on the other hand, typically keep a facial feature similar to the pre-puberty stage.
  • Skeletal structure. Here, more changes happen to females than to males during puberty. Hip bones widen as preparation for child rearing. Upper limbs in females also adjust greatly to accommodate the widening of the hips. Males, on the other hand, goes through the widening of the shoulders during this stage. Ribcage expansion also happens due to the effects of testosterone.
  • Fat distribution and muscle composition. This is dependent on one’s food preferences and habits, exercise enthusiasm, and levels of certain hormones in the body. In women, typically after the menopause stage, the hormone estrogen declines. When this happens, the fats from the hips, thigh, and buttocks, move to the waistline and is later on stored in the belly. Males, on the other hand, generally lacks this hormone, therefore, enabling fats to be deposited around the waists and abdomen. For muscle composition, the hormone testosterone plays a big role. Males, at an average, have 10 times more testosterone compared to females. This puts men at an advantage in building and maintaining muscles through the help of exercise.
  • Weight. Not only does it change the body shape, but it can also affect one’s posture and walking gait.


body shapes and lifestyles
  • Fitness activities. It has been proven over time that the performance of certain exercises reduces body fats. Muscles can also be built on specific body parts. This will all depend on the targeted body part for muscle growth. Without exercise though, it is a given, you know what is waiting for you.
  • Diet. Careful and healthy choices of foods can also lessen the accumulation of fats in the body. Your choice of food can determine whether you are gaining that extra belly fat or not.

Types of Body Shapes

body shapes and bodybuilding

The Ruler Body Shape


Measurements from the bust to the hips are similar, and the waistline is not well-defined.

Training Approach

  • Strength Training: Focus on building muscle in the shoulders and hips to create the illusion of curves. Compound movements like squats, deadlifts, and shoulder presses are essential.
  • Cardio: Moderate cardio to maintain overall fitness without excessive weight loss, which can further flatten the figure.
  • Nutrition: A balanced diet with sufficient protein to support muscle growth. Healthy fats and complex carbohydrates should also be included to maintain energy levels and overall health.

Pear-Shaped Body


Narrow bust with broad hips. Also known as the triangular shape.

Training Approach

  • Strength Training: Emphasize upper body workouts to balance out wider hips. Exercises like push-ups, bench presses, and lat pull-downs are effective.
  • Cardio: High-intensity interval training (HIIT) to burn fat, especially focusing on the lower body to reduce fat deposits.
  • Nutrition: A diet lower in carbohydrates and higher in protein can help reduce fat storage in the lower body. Incorporating plenty of vegetables and lean meats is beneficial.

Apple Body Shape


The bust is broader than the hips, with round shoulders and a tendency to carry weight in the midsection.

Training Approach

  • Strength Training: Focus on building muscle in the lower body to balance the broader upper body. Squats, lunges, and leg presses are ideal.
  • Cardio: Incorporate cardio that focuses on overall fat loss, such as running or cycling, to reduce belly fat.
  • Nutrition: A diet rich in fiber and protein can help manage weight around the midsection. Avoiding processed sugars and refined carbohydrates is crucial.

Hourglass Body Shape


Balanced measurements between the bust and hips with a well-defined waistline. Shoulders typically align with the hips.

Training Approach

  • Strength Training: Maintain balanced workouts that target all major muscle groups to preserve the body’s natural proportions. Exercises like deadlifts, bench presses, and shoulder presses are effective.
  • Cardio: Moderate cardio to maintain overall fitness without losing muscle mass.
  • Nutrition: A balanced diet with adequate protein to support muscle maintenance, alongside healthy fats and complex carbohydrates.

Oval Body Shape


The bust area is usually bigger than the rest of the body, with a tendency to gain weight easily around the belly area.

Training Approach

  • Strength Training: Focus on overall muscle building, with an emphasis on the core to create a more defined waistline. Core exercises like planks and leg raises are important.
  • Cardio: Regular cardio to help reduce overall body fat. Activities like brisk walking, swimming, or cycling are recommended.
  • Nutrition: A diet high in protein and fiber, and low in refined sugars and unhealthy fats, can help manage weight and improve body composition.

Other types of body shapes are:

  • Diamond shaped body. The hips here are broad, the bust narrow and is aligned with the shoulders. This is similar to the oval body shape.
  • Skinny body shape. This is similar to the ruler body shape but with bone structures that are small and light-bearing.
  • Athletic body shape. This is considered the sexiest body shape. There is the presence of well-toned body curves. This is muscular in form with well-built shoulders.
  • Lollipop body shape. Yes, there is such a shape as the lollipop body shape. This is characterized by a full and round bust area. The hips and waist are small, and the shoulders, broad.
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Types of Body Shapes and the Training Fit for It

Training for the kind of body shape that one has is like aiming for the perfect shot. Knowing your body shape gives you the idea of what is the perfect approach to building that muscle on a specific body part.

body shapes


These are usually marathon runner body. It is lean but is short in muscle. This body type has difficulty in building muscles. However, this type has good carbohydrate processing. Energy is always up because of thus and fats are burned easily. The struggle, building the muscle.

To do this, cardio sessions must be kept to a minimum. The focus should be to utilize compound exercises which aid in maximizing the release of growth hormones. Caloric intake should be around 3,000 calories in a day. Make sure to include plenty of starchy carbohydrates and supplement with whey protein. Carbohydrates tend to increase blood sugar levels which in turn drives the proteins to the muscles, for growth.


Often pear-shaped, there is a tendency to store body fats all over. There is a struggle as well in packing that dream muscle. But, there is always a light to look forward to in every dark situation. Here, management of weight and overall fitness is the hardest. To achieve a more balanced physique, the focus should be on shoulder development.

Another important focus is stripping away fats, specifically in the lower body. It is recommended to engage in a low to medium intensity of cardio activities. This will help shift fats in the body. Weight training is considered to be the best exercise because it can go on burning calories even after you’re done with the last set. For the nutrition part, a low carb diet should be taken along with high protein and fiber.


The dream. Boasts of well-built and muscular structure. Metabolism is high and the muscle cells are responsive. How lucky can one be? Indeed, the dream body shape. Even without gym time, you already have it. This type does not store much body fat and is the easiest to add up that new muscle.

If you fall under this body type, make the most of it. Make sure you have that progressive plan that will keep those muscles and improve on it. Maintain that strength and power even without the bulky look. Plyometrics – sprints, boxing, vertical jumps – are recommended. The body responses really well even to low reps and power moves. To fuel these exercises, a 2,500 caloric intake a day will suffice. Include plenty of whole grains but limit the fats.


Regardless of the body shape that one has, taking care of our physical self is one that we can always be assured of getting positive results. Not only does it help us improve physically, but it also helps us improve our general well-being in an immeasurable way. So get up there, smile and find out what training and nutrition fit your body shape.


Joel Snape. (2017). Ectomorph, Endomorph, And Mesomorph: How To Train For Your Body Type.

Cluebot Ng., (2019). Body Shape.

Charushila Biswas. (2019). 12 Different Body Shapes of Women.

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