Ectomorphic Body Type

Spring Update 2015 - On the Ectomorphic Body Type

Dear Friends, 

The weather is beautiful! Warming up, sunny and beckoning us to get outside!

I’m lucky enough to be spending Spring Break at the beach with my daughter and her friends who are blooming into beautiful young women. I really appreciate the way they are so accepting of each other, as they are so different in their interests, strengths, opinions and life experiences already, its enough to give one hope for the future! Another significant difference between them is classification of body types.

We talk about body type a lot at Brit PT. It is important for everyone to know that we are born with a code for our body’s development. There are strengths and weaknesses for each of the types, there are specific vulnerabilities in all of the body types when we consider injury and pain.

What is most important to absorb is that each of those types has a range from very healthy to very unhealthy. We live in a culture and time where the Ectomorphic body type in women is being worshipped in the media; Kiera Knightly (see photo below) is an excellent example, very slender, narrow hips and shoulders, almost angular joints and features, minimal body fat or curves.

Most of our celebrities are either this body type, or they are desperately trying to emulate it, through various methods offered by the beauty industry. The massive increase in social media is exposing younger children to the idea that this ectomorphic shape is the “norm.” The fact is that only approximately 33% of us carry that genetic code. It is so important for our children to absorb this. I have discussed this with my daughter for some years now as our young women are increasingly critical of their bodies in a world full of manipulated selfies. They cannot change their basic code whatever they do, the work is to optimize the wonderful program that you already have.

The ectomorphic female is thin to be sure, which some may see as the golden ticket, but her life’s work becomes strengthening to support her joints, which are more easily over extended due to ligament laxity. She does not absorb shock well, she easily becomes cold and muscles stiffen and injure. If she is hit by an outside force or is in a car accident she will take much longer to heal. Kiera Knightly herself received extensive PT for her long neck while filming The Duchess. The role required heavy wigs and hats which her neck was too weak to hold up without pain!

Each of the body types has an optimal level of balance and performance. Howard Schatz photographed top level sportsmen and women for his book  “Athlete”, and demonstrated the beautiful varieties of human bodies. They could not be more different but each person, coupled with perseverance and selection of the perfect activity for their body type has created an elite performer. Our distance runner second in from the left is a fairly pure example of an ectomorph (see Figure below).

So, on the beach this year lets focus on taking the healthiest you out into the sun. Eat well to nourish your body and give it all the nutrients it needs to take you through all of your planned adventures. Exercise in moderation for a balance of strength and flexibility, have fun with it! And if you get into trouble then give us a call so we can get you taken care of quickly.

Now offering additional clinic hours on Tuesday afternoons Friday mornings. (Click Appointments or call (336) 299-9394).

In Health and Harmony,



Lorraine Kingham PT, MTC, MHSC, CMTPT


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