Can Working Out Make You Shorter?

Can working out make you shorter? Though it may seem counterintuitive, there is some evidence that suggests that being too physically active can lead to a loss in height.


Exercise is an important part of leading a healthy lifestyle, and many people are encouraged to exercise for many reasons. One of the most common questions asked about exercise is whether it can make a person shorter in height. It is a surprising thought, but it’s an important question to ask since workouts and other physical activities can affect both physical and mental health.

The answer might surprise you – while working out cannot make you shorter, there are certain exercises that can have an impact on your height, either in the short-term or long-term. When looking at potential exercises to improve your overall health, it’s important to consider how they might affect your height and posture as well. In this article, we will investigate the relationship between working out and height as well as discuss some ways you can ensure that your fitness does not negatively affect your stature.

How Working Out Affects Your Height

Many people believe that working out can make you shorter by putting extra stress on your bones and muscles. However, this is not necessarily the case. Exercise can have a positive effect on your overall height and posture without reducing your height. In this article, we will discuss how working out impacts your height and how you can use it to your advantage.

The Role of Hormones

The hypothalamus, a region of the brain, produces hormones that control the production and release of growth hormones. These hormones have multiple functions in the body, including regulating body composition and energy metabolism, but they are most famously known for regulating our growth rate. When we work out, our bodies naturally produce signals that interact with these hormones to cause changes in our body.

In order to understand how working out might affect a person’s height, it is important to understand how specific types of exercise influence growth hormone levels. Generally speaking, intense or prolonged physical activity may decrease growth hormone levels, potentially resulting in a lower final height than would otherwise be expected. For example, endurance exercises such as running and swimming may deplete stores of available growth hormone; this phenomenon is especially relevant to young athletes who train heavily in a particular sport and can lead to stunted growth over time. Similarly, strength training can also limit peak height by causing premature bone closure at certain points around the body; when this occurs earlier than would normally happen (around 16-18 years old), it can inhibit optimal height potential for the individual involved.

Although regular physical activity does present some risks when it comes to impacting potential growth potential, not all exercises are created equal; moderate-intensity activities such as walking or jogging create much less of an effect when it comes to reducing available growth hormone levels than more intense workouts like sprinting or circuit training. As such, if you are particularly tall and want to maximize your chances of reaching momentous heights as an adult – or if you’re shorter than you would like – avoid aggressive workouts until your bones have stopped growing completely (i.e., after 16-18 years old).

Effects of Weight Training

Weight training, or the use of resistance such as weights or machines to increase muscular strength and endurance, can be beneficial to overall health. However, it may also have an impact on how tall you are. There are two primary types of weightlifting workouts: traditional strength training and powerlifting. Strength training is designed to build lean muscle mass in order to increase strength while powerlifting focuses on developing explosive power through maximum efforts like squatting and deadlifting.

It is believed that traditional weight training will not reduce height because it focuses on low weights for more reps which does not cause compression like high-intensity exercises would. In fact, studies have shown that when done correctly, strength training can actually help improve posture which can in turn make you look taller by a “visual illusion” due to improved spinal alignment.

On the other hand, powerlifting exercises involve lifting heavy weights with maximal effort, which increases compression within your spine over time and may lead to shortterm decrease in height due to shortening of ligaments that holds the structures of your spine together – this also creates a risk for vertebrae stress fracture that could further impact your height if left untreated. Therefore it is important to find exercises that work in balance with each other and seek professional assistance if needed when performing heavy lifts such as squats or deadlifts in order to minimize risk of spinal injury or height reduction with powerlifting exercise routine.

Effects of Cardio

Cardio is an effective form of exercise that helps to keep your whole body in shape and has numerous benefits. But does it have any effect on your height? The simple answer is no — cardio will not make you significantly shorter. However, over the long-term, intense cardio can have a slight impact on your overall stature.

High-intensity endurance activities such as running, biking and swimming place a great deal of stress on bones and joints, which may cause cartilage tissue to break down gradually over time. This can lead to slight decrease in growth over time, resulting in a few inches being lost from your height if done excessively. Additionally, people’s posture may become slightly more compacted when they do a lot of endurance activities, making them appear shorter than they actually are.

While the impact that cardio has on overall height is generally very small compared to factors like genetics or age, it’s important to think about how you structure your routine when considering workout safety and how it might affect both short-term performance as well as long-term effects like height loss. If you want to use cardio workouts as part of a healthy lifestyle but are concerned about potential effects on height, try focusing on lighter forms of activity such as walking or low-impact aerobics rather than intense running and sprinting. Incorporating strength exercises into your routine can further help protect against any muscle or joint breakdown that may occur during longer cardio sessions too!

Other Factors That Affect Height

Working out is often associated with height increase due to increased muscle mass or improved posture. However, there are many other factors that affect height, such as nutrition, genetics, and hormones. This article will explore the impact that each of these factors has on height and if working out can make you shorter.


When it comes to height, genetics plays an important role. Height is determined by the combinations of alleles that are inherited from each parent. If a person’s parents are short, their offspring is likely to be short as well. Similarly, if a person’s parents are tall, their offspring is likely to be tall as well. Although a person can’t completely change their genetics and thus affect their height significantly, they can make changes to their lifestyle that may result in small increases in height. For example, some studies have found that regular physical exercise can lead to height increases of up to two inches in teens and young adults; however these effects may decrease or disappear when adults reach a certain age due to things such as the gradual effects of aging on muscle and bone mass.


The foods you eat and the beverages you drink can also have an effect on your height. Proper nutrition and hydration are paramount for children and adults alike who wish to reach their full potential in terms of height. Those who experience significant caloric restriction, protein deficiency, vitamin D and calcium deficiency, or those who over-consume sugar and beverages such as soft drinks are more likely to experience stunted growth.

It is recommended that growing children consume a healthy diet which includes plenty of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, low-fat proteins such as fish, eggs or lean cuts of meat and low-fat dairy products. Eating meals with a balanced combination of these components can contribute to steady linear growth while also providing essential nutrients to ensure maximum growth potential. Moreover, remaining adequately hydrated is critical in order for the body’s soft tissues — including the cartilage in growing bones — to remain flexible enough for further stretching resulting in increased stature.


A person’s age profoundly influences their height. A child typically reaches half of his adult height by the age of two and three-quarters of it by age 11. Once this growth period is reached, a person will stop growing taller at the end of puberty, around the ages of 14 to 16 for girls and 17 to 19 in boys. Certain medical conditions can lead to stunted growth in children, such as poor nutrition, hormone abnormalities, chronic illnesses, and genetic conditions.

In adulthood, the only way people might change their height is if they experience bone loss (as a consequence of normal aging or secondary to a medical condition) or gain enough weight that their posture decreases significantly. Height loss can be concerning and should always be addressed with a physician if it happens after the expected time frame.


In conclusion, while it is possible that in rare cases a person may experience a temporary decrease in height associated with intense exercise, any decrease in height due to exercise is likely to be very small and not permanent. On the whole, there is no evidence that exercising can cause permanent decreases in overall body height.

Furthermore, regular physical activity and exercise have numerous health benefits including stronger bones and joint health, decreased risk of certain cancers, reduced chronic disease risk, improved mental health and increased life expectancy. For these reasons, it is important to stay physically active throughout your life regardless of any potential temporary changes in body height after intense workouts.

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