How Height Affects a Workout

Don’t you have certain exercises at the gym that just aren’t for you? I find squats  extremely hard, thrusts are impossible to do without hitting myself on the chin with a knee (making me look like a fool altogether), and some exercise machines just feel awkward. Turns out, I’m not going crazy, there is a reason for that. It’s my height…

It’s not rocket science, and this article that I found on the website of Women’s Health confirms my thoughts on this:

Taller people also may have more difficulty doing squats. The thinking here is that, because their legs are probably longer, they have further down to go before they hit the ideal squat position.

That makes sense I suppose. For the same reason, weight lifting is, in theory, easier for shorter people: weights lifted by a shorter lifter travel less distance than those of a much taller lifter. 

Picture credits: Fitness on Toast

Picture credits: Fitness on Toast

Shorter people have struggles of their own though, as we have an advantage with vertical jumps, like box jumps. As for the machines, they have their own reasons for being awkward for both very short and very tall people, the article explains:

Most fitness machines with adjustable moving parts are harder for people on extreme ends of the height scale (above six feet or below five feet). That’s because those machines are pretty much made for the average Joe.

So it’s a draw! Both Team Short and Team Tall are slightly disadvantaged at the gym. Well, if you don’t count the yoga mats that are always too short, that is…


Original Article written by Annie Daly for Women’s Health Magazine.


  • Reply
    4 May 2016 at 02:29

    Funny I have never thought about this but your right. When I watch my taller Clients squat I’m always correcting their form. Interesting point you make! Love 5’4 little me 🙈

    • Reply
      Tall Wife
      10 May 2016 at 12:02

      haha, thanks! Now you know why! 🙂

  • Reply
    9 May 2016 at 23:46

    This is SO true! I am constantly being yelled at halfway through a squat pulse that I’m not going down far enough. They just don’t understand!

    • Reply
      Tall Wife
      10 May 2016 at 12:04

      I know! It was a revelation to me too, but it makes perfect sense! 🙂

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