Is There an Ideal Runner’s Body Type?

Is There an Ideal Runner’s Body Type

There is no regular shape or size for a runner, a runner is anybody who moves faster than a simple walk. So by this definition almost anybody can be a runner.

But is there an actual optimum body size for certain types of runners? Is it a coincidence that sprinters tend to be small, muscular and squat, whereas distance runners are tall and lithesome?

Running Bodies

Mammals on the whole would probably easily trounce a human in a speed race, but the human body is ideal for long distance running. The upright position, bipedal gait, and bouncy ligaments and tendons all make the human body an ideal running machine. The human body was designed to move in complex ways, to jump, squat, run and all other sort of movements. Whether it is in everyday life to run to catch a train or out on a running track, humans were born to run. So whether you knew it or not you are designed as a runner.

The Running Body Type

Obviously, some people find running easier than others, but there are numerous reasons why this is so. If you watch any race in the world, you will see various body shapes competing. Those that make the winners podium tend to be lean and have a small frame. And in professional circumstances most competitors would more resemble a gazelle than a human. Trying to move anything is a lot easier the lighter it is, and this is same for the human body. Your body-weight is highly important when it comes to running, as you have to transport your weight from position A to position B. And it has been noted, that faster runners tend to have lower ankles which helps to create a more efficient stride.


Professional runners generally have lower body fat and have leaner bodies than amateur runners. But sports scientists have discovered that human bodies tend to adapt to regular movements. Professional runners train all the time, so their bodies have developed to be faster machines, they also know what fuel the body prefers and feed it accordingly. So, to help your running it will help if you lose weight, an ideal running frame will not have any excess fat. Whilst dieting and losing weight will definitely aid your running it will not instantly increase your speed. A balance of training and correct diet will be needed in conjunction with one another.

The Ideal Body?

In summary, a tall lithesome body is ideal for distance running, whilst a more muscular body is more helpful for sprinting. But all bodies, tall or short, lithesome or muscular can and should run. As long as you have two legs and a healthy heart then there is nothing to stop you running. There is no such thing as the ideal body, you simply have to perfect what mother nature has given you. To be a good runner, no matter what your body is like, takes dedication and persistence.