How your body type can influence your training – Wide vs Narrow ISA

All bodies are not created equally! Once we realise this we can then program accordingly.

Maybe you have experienced yourself, seeing an advertisement online for a gym program that will make you strong, powerful, explosive all these catchy buzz words. You undertake the program only to find lacklustre results.

Why is this?

There are many factors that could’ve influenced the success of this program such as:

  • Your adherence
  • Your intensity during the sessions
  • Your lifestyle factors – sleep, stress, nutrition
  • Your training age (novice vs experienced lifter)
  • Your body type!

More specifically the type of angle your rib cage makes! 

This is called your ‘Infrasternal Angle’ (ISA).

We can be Wide with our ribcage or Narrow. These refer to two basic archetypes, each person will be biased towards one or the other from birth.

It can go deeper when we consider your ‘Infrapubic angle’ (IPA) that is your pelvis and the shape that it sits.

From here we can basically classify you into certain body types and dictate what type of training will best be suited for you!

Some people have bodies that have equal ribcages and pelvis (relatively). Making us looking like a square or more round in shape.

We have people with pelvis’s that are wider than our ribs leading to us looking like a triangle or pear-shaped body.

We have people with wider ribcages than our pelvis which can lead to an inverted triangle or funnel shape body.

This is largely pre-determined through our genetics, we are basically born with a certain lenience towards being a triangle or a funnel, round or thin in relation to our skeleton.

This is not to say we cannot alter this though and it certainly does not mean we can’t influence our skeletal muscle, body composition and the like.

Knowing our body type can allow us to enhance our capabilities through targeting our weaknesses!

Our fluid, guts, the insides of our body under our skin are influenced by pressure. Where there is a small area there will be high pressure, where there is a large area there will be low pressure.

High

Low

Low

High

Once we understand this, we will see understand what each body type excels at and what they don’t.

The person on the left with the triangle shape will generally be less ‘explosive’ they will be instead be stable or strong and hard to move out of their positions. E.g., A centre back in soccer or a forward in NRL. This may be seen in athletes like Tom Brady and Nikola Jokic. They have a narrow ISA and wide IPA, leading to their pressure gradient of their guts pushing them downwards.

The person on the right with the funnel shape will generally be bouncy, athletic and explosive. This will look like athletes such as Lebron James, Cristiano Ronaldo and Usain Bolt. These people have a Wide ISA and narrow IPA, leading to their pressure gradient pushing them upwards.

The Person on the left (Triangle) will require more overcoming strategies to allow their guts to push back up. This can be achieved through band assisted squats and seated jumps to ‘decrease their relative weight’ so they can unload and then overcome the pressure from gravity easier.

The person on the right (Funnel) will require more absorbing based movements to allow their guts to drop down through movements such as box squats, controlled isometrics and single limb exercises.

Knowing a person’s skeleton archetype can be applied to large scale environments – sports teams, group classes, small group training to enable tailored yet results based approaches to enable people to become more robust and capable versions of themselves!

If you want to find out more feel free to reach out!

Move Right. Live Right.

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