Looking to achieve your muscular potential? Then you need to know your “ideal” body measurements. Learn your goal for every muscle group here!

Building muscle is great, but building balanced, proportional muscle is better. It’s the difference between haphazardly lifting and eating and strategically earning your aesthetics. And for most of us, it’s not going to happen by accident.

Old-school bodybuilders like Frank Zane, Lee LabradaArnold Schwarzenegger, and Serge Nubret are all examples of men who managed to combine aesthetics with size to compete at the highest level. New-school stars like Steve CookSadik Hadzovic, and Brandon Hendrickson are bringing the V-taper tradition to a new generation. And if you’re forever ‘mirin Zyzz, well, you know how important balance can be.

This calculator will give your natural muscle-building potential for each muscle group, based on a classic, timeless measurement of the “perfect” male body.



Chest: ?
Waist: ?
Hip: ?
Biceps: ?

Forearm: ?
Thigh: ?
Calve: ?
Neck: ?


You may think it’s as simple as “get a pump and pull out the measuring tape,” but getting an accurate measurement requires a bit more intentionality than that:

  1. Refrain From Exercise Before Measuring. The idea behind body-part measurement is to ensure that all groups are assessed in their natural state to get an accurate result.
  2. Don’t Flex. Measure body parts in their relaxed state. Flexing will produce an inconsistent result between body parts.
  3. Measure Both Sides. To accurately assess symmetry, both sides of the body need to be measured. If one muscle group is “off,” it is worth prioritizing in your training.
  4. Track Your Measurements. Want to know how much you’ve grown? Track your physique measurements and progress in BodySpace.


The ancient Greeks had specific ideas regarding how the perfect male physique should look: a small and muscular waist, tapered back, wide shoulders, and detailed, but not overwhelmingly huge, muscles. The size of each muscle related to the next in what is known as the “Golden Ratio.”

The great Eugene Sandow—the man the Mr. Olympia statuette is based on—achieved a perfectly proportioned physique that was very close to these measurements in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

This calculator is based on Sandow’s measurements, which were:

  • Height: 5-foot-9
  • Weight: 185-195 lbs.
  • Arms: 18
  • Calves: 18
  • Neck: 18
  • Thighs: 27
  • Chest: 48
  • Waist: 30
  • Hips: 42

Sandow’s example has continued to inspire professional and amateur bodybuilders ever since, including the classic movie star Steve Reeves, who was one of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s original inspirations as a bodybuilder.

You can learn more about Sandow in the video and article, “The History of the Squat.”

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Once you know the priorities to build your training around, it’s time to take the same kind of strategic approach to the rest of your training and nutrition. These popular calculators can help you dial in your plan!

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