Does gym stop height growth?

by   |   Jan 02, 2024
5/5 - (1 vote)

In the quest for a healthier lifestyle and a sculpted physique, many of us often grapple with misconceptions that can steer us in the wrong direction. One such widespread fallacy suggests that engaging in gym workouts might hinder our height growth and impede bone development. However, it’s imperative that we turn to the realm of science to shed light on the truth behind such claims.

Contrary to what many may believe, scientific research overwhelmingly supports the notion that gym exercises do not have an adverse impact on our height. In fact, these physical activities are often celebrated as integral to our overall well-being. Rather than acting as growth deterrents, gym-based workouts can actually be instrumental in fortifying our bones and preventing conditions like osteoporosis.

To delve deeper into this intriguing debate and attain a comprehensive understanding of whether gym training truly hampers height growth, we should direct our attention to the enlightening insights offered in the following article by Howtogrowtaller.

Does gym affect height growth?

In the realm of health and wellness, persistent myths and half-truths seem to cling on, defying the evidence-based insights provided by science and experts. Amidst the plethora of inquiries that inundate medical offices and fitness centers, one frequently heard question resonates: “Can engaging in regular gym activities impede height growth?” For parents with children under the age of 18, it’s only natural to harbor concerns regarding whether the physical exertion and training regimens their youngsters undertake in gymnasiums or as part of athletic teams might thwart their vertical stature development. Undoubtedly, this concern carries significant weight, but the reassuring truth is that your child need not abandon their fitness pursuits

So, where does the myth that gym stops height growth originate from?

Let’s go back to 1964 in Japan where this myth first started. A group of researchers found that children who work hard during their growing years end up having short stature. Their justification for this is when children are in puberty, physically excessive work will cause damage to their growth plates and make them close earlier, thus stunting their growth process. However, their studies have failed to take into consideration one crucial factor that is the vast malnourishment among Japanese children at that time. This is the ultimate culprit for their short stature instead of working hard on the field or in factories. Unfortunately, parents at the time were misled by these articles and magazines about gym effect on height as well as by gossips from their friends, which eventually makes this myth even more popular.


Does gym stop height growth?

Does lifting weights stunt growth?

The misconception that gym affects height growth persists until now probably because people are afraid working out may lead to injuries to active growth plates, the “engine” behind human vertical growth for children and teenagers. Notwithstanding this, stunted growth can result from weights that are too heavy, poor form, and a lack of supervision. It is not entirely the result of weight lifting or gym exercises.

What this myth fails to address is you are susceptible to a risk of injury in almost any type of sports or recreational activity. In fact, growth plates are involved in between 15 and 30 percent of all childhood fractures. As the cartilaginous areas of growing tissues at the ends of long bones, your growth plates will turn into hardened bone when you reach physical maturity, mostly after you have gone through puberty. These plates are softer during development, and therefore more subject to damage. This does not mean a teenager or an adolescent should avoid gym exercises or weight lifting simply because the growth plates are susceptible to damage.


Does lifting weights stunt your growth?

Can gym affect height, according to scientists?

There is no scientific research or evidence supporting said myth whatsoever. The shared thought among medical professionals is that gym exercises are safe for kids under 18 as long as they are properly applied. A properly designed and supervised training program engenders various benefits, namely:

  • Decreasing rates of sports-related injury and fracture risk
  • Increasing strength and bone strength index
  • Growing interests in fitness and self-esteem.

At what age should people begin their gym journey?

Though in the middle of their height growth process, children and teenagers from 12 to 16 years old are yet to develop muscles and skeletal systems strong enough for intense gym exercises. As a result, when going to the gym at this age, all of the exercises will directly affect the vertical skeletal system. For this age group, the recommended exercises should be simple such as swinging or rope skipping so that they can avoid causing damage to their growth plates while still triggering growth hormone production effectively.

Once they reach 17 years of age, they can consider increasing the intensity of their training programs. At this age, both their muscles and skeletal system are strong enough for intense gym exercises, including weight lifting. From a scientific point of view, gym exercises will help make their skeletal system and muscles strong, healthy, and resistant to osteoporosis. For this reason, when you turn 17, you can take advantage of gym exercises to not only develop a toned body but also promote overall body development.

Gym Exercises for Height

When it comes to gym exercises for height, there are various options to consider. Let’s explore some exercises that may help in your height-increasing journey.

Hanging Exercises

Hanging exercises are a great way to decompress the spine and promote proper alignment, potentially enhancing your height. Try incorporating the following hanging exercises into your routine:

  • Pull-Ups: This exercise targets the upper body and engages the core muscles.
  • Chin-Ups: Chin-ups also strengthen the upper body and can help improve overall posture.
  • Hanging Leg Raises: This exercise targets the abdominal muscles while decompressing the spine.

Stretching Exercises

Stretching exercises can help improve flexibility, correct posture, and potentially contribute to height enhancement. Consider adding the following stretching exercises to your gym routine:

  • Cobra Stretch: This stretch targets the spine and abdomen, potentially promoting proper alignment.
  • Cat-Camel Stretch: The cat-camel stretch helps release tension in the spine and improves flexibility.
  • Bridge Pose: This yoga pose stretches the spine and strengthens the back muscles.

Yoga and Pilates

Yoga and Pilates are forms of exercise that focus on flexibility, strength, and balance. These practices can potentially improve posture and elongate the spine, which may contribute to height growth. Incorporate the following yoga and Pilates exercises into your routine:

  • Downward-Facing Dog: This yoga pose stretches the entire body and helps improve posture.
  • Pilates Swan Dive: The swan dive exercise targets the back muscles and promotes spinal elongation.
  • Tree Pose: This yoga pose improves balance and helps align the body.

Strength Training

Strength training exercises can help build muscle mass and improve overall strength. While they may not directly increase your height, they can contribute to better posture and a more proportionate physique. Consider including the following strength training exercises in your gym routine:

  • Squats: Squats target the lower body muscles and can help improve overall lower body strength.
  • Deadlifts: Deadlifts engage multiple muscle groups, including the back and legs.
  • Lunges: Lunges are excellent for targeting the quadriceps and glute muscles.

Pay attention to weightlifting at the appropriate age to avoid interfering with height growth

Effective Gym Schedule for Height Growth for Males and Females

While regular exercise and physical activity are important for overall health and well-being, it’s important to note that height is primarily determined by genetic factors and growth plates that close during adolescence. However, engaging in specific exercises and maintaining a healthy lifestyle can contribute to optimal growth and development. Here’s a general gym schedule that can support healthy growth for both males and females:

Strength Training:

  • Perform compound exercises that target major muscle groups, such as squats, deadlifts, lunges, bench presses, and shoulder presses.
  • Aim for 2-3 sessions per week, with a day of rest between each session.
  • Start with lighter weights and gradually increase the intensity as you progress.

Stretching and Flexibility:

  • Incorporate stretching exercises into your routine to improve flexibility and posture.
  • Focus on stretches for the back, hamstrings, hip flexors, and calves.
  • Perform stretching exercises before and after each workout.

Core Exercises:

  • Include exercises that strengthen your core muscles, such as planks, Russian twists, and bicycle crunches.
  • Aim for 2-3 sessions per week, alternating with strength training or cardio sessions.

Cardiovascular Exercises:

  • Engage in cardiovascular activities to improve cardiovascular health and overall fitness.
  • Choose activities you enjoy, such as running, cycling, swimming, or using the elliptical machine.
  • Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity cardio per week.

Posture Awareness:

  • Pay attention to your posture throughout the day, especially when sitting or standing for extended periods.
  • Practice exercises that promote good posture, such as shoulder retractions and wall slides.
  • Avoid slouching and maintain an upright position to maximize your height potential.

How does a gym workout menu increase height?

While exercise can support overall health and well-being, it’s important to understand that height is primarily determined by genetic factors and growth plates that close during adolescence. However, maintaining a balanced and nutritious diet is crucial for optimal growth and development. Here are some general dietary recommendations to support growth:

Balanced Nutrition:

  • Consume a well-rounded diet that includes a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats.
  • Ensure you’re getting sufficient macronutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, and fats) and micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) through your diet.

Protein-Rich Foods:

  • Include good sources of protein in your diet, such as lean meats, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy products, legumes, and nuts.
  • Protein is essential for tissue growth and repair.

Calcium and Vitamin D:

  • Adequate intake of calcium and vitamin D is important for bone health.
  • Include dairy products, fortified plant-based milks, leafy green vegetables, and fortified cereals in your diet to ensure sufficient calcium intake.
  • Get regular exposure to sunlight or consider vitamin D supplements if necessary.


  • Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day.
  • Water is crucial for various bodily functions, including maintaining healthy joints and promoting proper growth.

Avoid Excessive Caloric Restriction:

  • While it’s important to maintain a healthy body weight, severe caloric restriction can negatively impact growth and development.
  • Ensure you’re consuming enough calories to meet your energy needs.

Avoid Smoking and Excessive Alcohol Consumption:

  • Smoking and excessive alcohol consumption can have detrimental effects on growth and overall health.
  • It’s best to avoid these habits altogether.

Not letting gym affect height growth

It should be noted that in order to enjoy the profound benefits of gym exercises, apart from choosing appropriate exercises, performing these exercises properly is vitally important. When you hit the gym, bear in mind the following advice:

  • Warm up thoroughly before performing any exercise to avoid injuries during training.
  • Do not perform exercises that affect the spine such as weight lifting in the morning because it is the time when your body reaches its maximum height (this height will be shortened throughout the day due to gravity, which has discussed in another article). You should only do weightlifting in a lying position to avoid adverse effects on your spine.
  • The exercise intensity should fit your body. Excessive exercise should be avoided at all costs.

After exercising at the gym, you need to have sufficient rest for your muscles to have time to recover and grow. In addition, a balanced and healthy diet is a crucial addition to your exercise routine. Your daily diet should be rich in protein, fiber, calcium, and vitamins. You should also lead a healthy lifestyle, go to bed before 11 p.m., and say “no” to staying up late to play video games or binge-watch your favorite TV series. Those things would actually stunt your growth, not the beneficial gym exercises. What is more, do not let stimulants such as alcohol, beer, or tobacco “infiltrate” your lifestyle during your growing years as they are terribly harmful to your overall body development, let alone your height growth.

Now that you know the answer to the question “Does gym stop height increase?”, you can enjoy the many benefits it offers. Still, no matter how much you are into fitness, if you are still a teen or an adolescent, make sure you are supervised by a certified personal trainer, coach, or educator who has knowledge and experience in designing and supervising gym exercises for young people. Gym exercises are extremely good for health in adulthood and have nothing to do with height shrinkage as rumored.


Joy Bauer is a renowned physician and nutrition expert who has dedicated her career to helping people live healthier, happier lives. With over two decades of experience in the field of health and wellness, Dr. Bauer has become one of the most trusted voices in the industry.
About This Researcher
One of Dr. Bauer’s areas of expertise is in the field of height growth. She has worked with countless patients over the years who were looking to increase their height naturally, and has developed a range of effective strategies and techniques to help them achieve their goals.

Dr. Bauer believes that a healthy diet and lifestyle are essential for optimal growth and development. She works closely with her patients to develop personalized nutrition plans that are tailored to their unique needs and goals. These plans include a variety of nutrient-dense foods and supplements that are designed to support healthy bone growth and development.

In addition to her work in height growth, Dr. Bauer is also a leading expert in the areas of weight loss, disease prevention, and overall wellness. She is a regular contributor to a number of popular media outlets, including The Today Show, The Dr. Oz Show, and Good Morning America.

If you’re looking for a physician who is passionate about helping you live your best life, look no further than Dr. Joy Bauer. With her expertise, compassion, and commitment to excellence, she is the ideal partner for anyone who is looking to achieve their health and wellness goals.

The reason behind the creation of the website HowToGrowTaller is to provide effective guidance and support to individuals who are looking to increase their height naturally. Dr. Joy Bauer recognized that many people feel self-conscious or insecure about their height, and that there is a great deal of misinformation out there about how to grow taller.

With HowToGrowTaller, Dr. Bauer wanted to create a comprehensive resource that would provide individuals with the tools, knowledge, and support they need to achieve their height goals. The website includes a wide range of resources, including nutrition plans, exercise routines, and other proven strategies that are designed to support healthy growth and development.

One of the key benefits of HowToGrowTaller is that it is a one-stop-shop for all things related to height growth. Instead of spending countless hours researching different strategies and techniques, individuals can turn to the website to access everything they need in one convenient location.

Overall, the goal of HowToGrowTaller is to help individuals feel more confident and empowered in their bodies. By providing them with the resources and support they need to grow taller naturally, Dr. Bauer hopes to help people achieve their height goals and improve their overall quality of life.

Researcher Locations:

33 Whitehall Street, New York

Education & Training
Pediatric Psychology – Nemours Childrens Clinic – Jacksonville, 2003

Child Psychology – University of Florida, 2002

Board Certifications
American Board of Professional Psychology

Areas of Research



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