Definition and introduction

Body type is primarily defined as our external appearance. This consists primarily of the components of the extremities such as arms and legs, our head and the hull. In contrast, ours is not directly visible Organ system.

Another area that completes the physique is the microscopic area, which mainly consists of Cell associations, Musculature and annoy consists.

Macroscopic part: Macroscopy roughly describes everything visible to the naked eye is. In terms of body structure, this includes the extremities (legs and arms), head, torso and also the organ system. Bones, muscles and fat are the shapers of the external appearance.

Microscopic part: Microscopy includes all parts of the body that are under the microscope become visible. These include blood components, tissues, cells and microorganisms.

What body types are there?

There are different models that classify the body types. Probably the best known and most widespread model differentiates between three body types - the ectomorphic, mesomorphic and endomorphic types. This is the division according to William Sheldon into different somatic constitution types. The body types are based on various genetic and optical properties of a person. However, hardly any person can be clearly assigned to an exact body type, but is presented as a mixture of the three types.

Somatic constitution types

Here Sheldon traced the body structure back to the three embryonic germ layers of humans. However, this classification method has been refuted, but is still used in the fitness sector. Sheldon describes three main types consisting of ectomorph, mesomorph and endomorph. There is also a mixed type that most people have. The different main forms are combined with one another. A endomesomorphic Type would therefore be a sporty, muscular person who, however, tends to have increased fat deposits.

  • The ectomorph, too leptosome called, body type is characterized by a very slim physique. The people are also usually tall and have low body fat and muscle percentages. Optical features are long arms and legs and a short torso with a narrow chest and narrow shoulders.
  • The mesomorph, too metromorphic called, body type is characterized by high muscle mass. This is fundamentally given to the person by nature and can be built up quickly and efficiently through targeted training. At the same time, the people only have a low percentage of body fat. Optical features include a long upper body with a broad chest, broad shoulders and large hands and feet. In men this type of construction is called V-figure referred to in women as Hourglass shape. The mesomorphic type is often referred to as the "ideal type" because it is a mixture between the ectomorphic and endomorphic types.
  • The endomorphic, too pycnomorphic The named body type represents people with a high percentage of body fat and usually high weight. Other characteristics are short arms and legs, broad hips and a generally round body. These body types tend to gain weight quickly from the accumulation of water and adipose tissue. This explains the obesity tendency.

Constitutional typology

Classification according to Ernst Kretschmer:

Similar to William Sheldon, Kretchmer tried to divide the characteristic body structure of humans into different types. His focus was on creating a connection between body structure and character traits. To do this, he first divided people into three main types, leptosomes, pycnics and athletes.

  • Leptosome: Similar to the ectomorphic type, it is characterized by slimness, thin arms and legs, increased length and narrow shoulders
  • Pykniker: The Pykniker is the counterpart of the endomorphic type. Increased fat deposits, small body size and soft facial features.
  • Athlete: Like the mesomoprh type, the focus here is on the muscular appearance. In addition, there are broad shoulders and low fat deposits.

Physique and posture - what is the relationship?

The posture is determined by the interaction of bones, ligaments and especially the muscles and their effects on the position of the human body. As a healthy posture, the upright posture With straight shoulders and chin slightly raised designated. Different postures can be obtained for the different body types. However, these cannot and should by no means be viewed as universal.

The ectomorphic body type usually has one posture leaning forward, slightly bent on. This posture is particularly strengthened by the long arms, as this makes the body appear to be bent even further forward. The short upper body also emphasizes the long arms.

The mesomorphic body type is characterized by a upright, confident posture excellent. This posture is caused by the high percentage of muscles of the mesomorphic type. As a result, the entire body exhibits a certain Body tension on which the person appear more confident leaves.

For the endomorphic physique type is not characterizing any particular posture. Usually this body type shows drooping shoulders, which are emphasized by the short neck.

However, none of these postures are universally transferable to all persons of a body type. Which posture a person takes depends largely on psychological and characteristic features. In addition, very few people can clearly assign themselves to one of these three body types, which inevitably results in mixed types of the three types.

Development with age

Most people lose muscle mass with age. Changes to the bone are also more common. One-sided movements can cause certain muscle groups or bone parts to be particularly pronounced or worn.

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