Shoulder to Waist Ratio

Did you know an ideal shoulder to waist ratio is perhaps the most important physical indicator of a man's sex appeal? 

I'm not joking.

Whether you're watching Wolverine with your girlfriend or mates... 

We can all agree Hugh Jackman looks incredible with his shirt off...

But few of us can place their finger on why our eyes have this weird desire to feast on his (or any other Hollywood actor's) ripped body.

By the end of this article, you'll know the exact reason...

And how you can take advantage of evolutionary psychology and basic math to build a standout physique that makes women swoon.

How An Optimal Shoulder/Waist Ratio Skyrockets Male Attractiveness

A big part of what makes someone visually attractive to the opposite sex is grounded in evolution.

Just like an hourglass figure on a woman implies fertility, a V-shaped physique signals strength and virility for men.

Guys rocking broad shoulders and a slim waist will ALWAYS beat their skinny-fat brethren on the dating market.

That's not to say skinny-fat dudes can't elevate their sexual market value in other ways...

Amassing an eight-figure net worth or becoming a famous actor/athlete would level the playing field.

But all other factors remaining equal, men with killer bodies kill it with the ladies.

From a physical perspective, it's hard-wired into what women seek in a mate.

Sure, some females will claim how low-testosterone guys with dad bods who vacuum clean and change diapers – while she slaves away at her desk creating PowerPoints – make for the most attractive partner blah blah blah...

As always? 

Don't listen to what someone says.

Look at what they do.

Words are meaningless. Actions reveal a person's true intentions.

And women's actions reveal their lust for powerful male bodies.

How else do you explain Chippendales strippers (who all must be six foot tall and have six-pack abs) selling out seven shows per week in Las Vegas starting at $50 per ticket?

Can you imagine a bunch of stay-at-home dads (with their skinny arms and beer bellies), gyrating shirtless on stage in a packed Sin City nightclub, spurring a stampede of screeching women to throw stacks of greenbacks (along with their moist panties) at them?

Get real.

Women wouldn't show up even if you paid them.

How Do You Calculate Shoulder to Waist Ratio?

How Do You Calculate Shoulder to Waist Ratio

Figuring out your shoulder to waist ratio doesn't require advanced math skills...

Divide your shoulder circumference by waist circumference.

To get accurate readings, measure the circumference of the shoulders at their widest point – typically halfway between collarbone and nipples.

Measure the circumference of the waist at belly button.

Example:

  • Shoulder: 110 cm (43.3 inches)
  • Waist: 80 cm (31.5 inches)

This gives us a shoulder to waist ratio of 1.375 (110 cm divided by 80 cm).

What Is the Ideal Shoulder Size?

That's like asking:

"What is the ideal amount of income to lead a happy life?"

You can't answer such a question in a vacuum.

You have to take both sides of the money equation into account...

Income and expenses.

You earn, say, $10 million per year...

But if you blow it all on designer clothes, sports cars, and a cocaine addiction...

You'll be worse off than the guy making $100K and saving 70% of his income.

Think it could never happen?

Look up how many NFL and NBA players go broke because they can't keep a lid on their expenses.

Same goes for body proportions.

Broad shoulders alone won't make a sexy body.

For proof, just check out heavyweight powerlifters or strongman competitors such as Eddie Hall or Brian Shaw...

What Is The Ideal Shoulder Size

Massive shoulders? 

You bet.

Massive gut?

Yup, that too.

Pinnacle of male attractiveness?

Only if you have a bizarre fetish for huge, fat dudes...

It's the combination of wide shoulders plus a lean midsection that really produces a pleasing physique.

The closer your proportions match something known as the Adonis Ratio, the more attractive your body will look.

What Is the Adonis Ratio?

The Adonis Ratio (aka Adonis Index) is the ratio between your shoulder circumference to your waist circumference.

And what is the perfect Adonis Ratio?

1.618.

Ring a bell?

It should.

1.618 is also known as the Golden Ratio, an ancient mathematical principle that governs many natural laws.

Besides the human body, you can find it in many beautiful paintings, structures, and nature.

The Parthenon in Greece, Pyramids in Giza, and Mona Lisa were all designed using the golden ratio. 

What Is Adonis Ratio

Leonardo da Vinci, who painted Mona Lisa, referred to the Golden Ratio as the "divine proportion".

Alright, enough with the history lesson...

If you want to develop a body that women find attractive in any situation – whether you're slinging iron in a tank top or rocking a custom suit at a cocktail party – you must dial in your Adonis Ratio to reach the divine proportion of 1.6.

How to Improve Shoulder to Waist Ratio

To optimize your shoulder to waist ratio, focus on two things:

1. Increase shoulder circumference

2. Decrease waist circumference

How to Improve Shoulder to Waist Ratio

Remember our earlier example, where your waist at 80 cm and shoulders at 110 cm produced a ratio of 1.375? 

With no changes to your waist measurement, you'd have to increase shoulder circumference by 18 cm (7 inches) to reach the coveted 1.6 Adonis Index. 

That's a ton of extra muscle!

But...

If you were to reduce waist circumference by 5 cm (2 inches), then you'd only need another 10 cm (3.9 inches) to achieve the ideal shoulder/waist ratio of 1.6.

A small waist shrinkage almost halves the amount of muscle you must slap on your body. 

Here's how to make it happen... 

Best Exercises to Beef Up Your Chest, Back, and Shoulders

You only need to focus on three key upper body areas to bring out the eye candy women find so tasty...

1. Chest

2. Back 

3. Shoulders

Best exercises to craft chiseled chesticles?

  • Dumbbell Bench Press
  • Weighted Dip
  • Ring Push-Up

Because you can't see your back muscles in the mirror (without a lot of twisting and turning, anyway), most guys never bother to attack back training with the same zeal they reserve for chest and biceps.

But building a jacked back is mandatory to optimize your shoulder/waist ratio.

Add these movements to your routine for a thicker, wider back:

  • Chin-Up
  • Pulldown
  • 1 Arm DB Row
  • Seated Cable Row
  • Chest Supported Row

What about shoulder training?

The front delts get plenty of stimulation from dumbbell bench presses, dips, and push-ups.

You'll also want to include direct overhead work in your program to blow up the shoulders:

  • Seated Dumbbell Press
  • Seated Smith Press
  • High Incline (60-75 Degree) Dumbbell or Smith Press
  • Viking Press

You can build a round set of shoulders with only a few exercises (and their variations) alone.

Leave the upright rows, lateral raises, and other isolation movements to bodybuilders. They do little for shoulder growth when you're first starting out.

Getting strong on multi-joint movements will give you all the shoulder development you want.

By the time you can seated dumbbell press your body weight for ten reps or dip four plates, you will no longer suffer from narrow shoulders...

And won't need isolation work with seven-pound dumbbells, anyway.

The Only thing you must do to Slim Your Waist

Contrary to popular belief, spot reduction doesn't exist.

Meaning?

You can't carve out rock-hard rows of abs by doing crunches, V-ups, and bicycle kicks all day, every day.

Melting belly fat comes down to one thing, and one thing only...

Diet.

Healthy, nutritious foods in a calorie deficit are the key to cutting down on the love handles.

Another important factor to pay attention to?

Even when staying true to the Golden Ratio of 1.6, your waist should not exceed 45% of your height.

If you're 180 cm (5'11") tall, your waist circumference measured at navel should top out at 81 cm (31.9 inches).

A wider waist, despite broader shoulders to compensate for it, will move you away from the ideal male physique.

Remember:

Leanness beats hugeness.

Wrapping Up

Creating an aesthetic physique is all about balance. 

For a perfectly proportioned body, bring your shoulder to waist ratio as close to the Golden Ratio of 1.6 as possible.

If you aren't there yet, increase the size of your chest, back, and shoulders...

And follow a fat-torching diet to decrease your stomach...

That's all you need to do to maximize the number of women who will eye-fuck your body.

Now get to work!

Yunus Barisik, CSCS, has coached 500+ competitive athletes. His client list includes NCAA D1 champions, World Champions and NHL players.A former skinny-fat kid struggling to gain strength and muscle, Yunus managed to build a respectable 3x body weight deadlift. He has also helped dozens of scrawny men add muscle, hit lifting PRs they never thought were possible, and saved them from the skinny-fat curse.

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