Does Lifting Make You Shorter?

by   |   Mar 16, 2023
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Weightlifting has been associated with various benefits for physical and mental health. It has been shown to improve mood, anxiety, and cognitive function. Despite these benefits, the myth that weightlifting can make you shorter has persisted, causing many people to avoid weightlifting out of fear of becoming shorter. Let’s look at this myth and find out the answer: Does lifting make you shorter?

What is weightlifting?

Weightlifting, also known as resistance training, involves lifting weights or using resistance to challenge your muscles. It also includes exercises, such as squats, deadlifts, bench presses, and overhead presses. The goal of weightlifting is to build muscle and improve strength as well as to enhance overall fitness and health.

Does lifting make you shorter?

The idea that lifting weights can make you shorter is based on the belief that weightlifting stunts growth. This theory goes that lifting heavy weights puts pressure on the bones and compresses the spine, which can lead to a decrease in height. However, there is no evidence to support the idea that lifting weights stunts growth. Weightlifting can have a positive impact on bone density and growth. When we lift weights, our bones respond to stress by becoming stronger and denser, which can help to prevent osteoporosis and other bone-related conditions later in life.


Does lifting make you taller?

As we have mentioned above, while exercise can promote healthy bone growth and development during childhood and adolescence, there is no evidence suggesting that lifting weights can increase height in adults. Height is determined by a combination of genetics and environmental factors, including nutrition and exercise. 

While lifting weights may not directly increase height, it can have many other benefits for overall health and fitness, including building strength, increasing muscle mass, improving bone density, and correcting your posture, which can make you appear somewhat taller. 

Benefits of weightlifting

Physical benefits

Regular weightlifting can lead to improved physical performance and function, making everyday tasks easier and reducing the risk of injury. 

  • Strength: When you lift weights, your muscles contract against the resistance of the weights. Over time, this resistance challenges your muscles to become stronger and more efficient at generating force. As a result, you can lift heavier weights and perform more repetitions with less fatigue.
  • Muscle mass: Weightlifting also causes micro-tears in your muscle fibers, which stimulate muscle growth. As your muscles repair and rebuild themselves, they become bigger and more defined. This increase in muscle mass not only improves your physical appearance but also helps to support your joints and improve overall strength.
  • Endurance: Weightlifting can also improve your muscular endurance, or the ability of your muscles to perform work over an extended period. This is achieved through high-repetition sets and shorter rest periods, which challenge your muscles to work harder for longer periods.

Doing weightlifting correctly improves overall fitness and health. In addition, it is beneficial for reducing body fat, improving cardiovascular health, and increasing metabolic rate. 

Mental benefits

Besides physical benefits, weightlifting can also have positive effects on mental health and well-being. Studies have shown that weightlifting can help to reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety, improve mood and self-esteem, and increase cognitive function [1].

  • Reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety: The release of endorphins during lifting workouts can improve mood and reduce feelings of stress and anxiety.
  • Improve mood and self-esteem: Weightlifting can improve mood and self-esteem by promoting a sense of accomplishment and self-efficacy. 
  • Increase cognitive function: Regular exercise, including weightlifting, has been linked to improvements in cognitive function. This includes improvements in memory, attention, and decision-making.
  • Provide a sense of community: Weightlifting can also provide a sense of community and social support, which can improve mental health. 


Weightlifting is a highly accessible form of exercise, as it can be done at home or in a gym with minimal equipment. It can also be easily modified to suit different fitness levels and abilities. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced lifter, there is a weightlifting routine that can work for you.

Popular weightlifting exercises to take 


Compound exercises

Compound exercises are multi-joint movements that engage multiple muscle groups at once. These exercises are highly effective for building strength and muscle mass, as they allow you to lift heavier weights and work more muscles in less time. 

  • Squats: Squats target the quads, hamstrings, and glutes, and also engage the core muscles for stability. They work well for increasing muscle mass and lower body strength.
  • Deadlifts: Deadlifts are another great compound exercise that targets the lower body, as well as the back and core muscles. They involve lifting a barbell from the ground to a standing position, using proper form and technique to avoid injury.
  • Bench press: A common compound workout that works the chest, shoulders, and triceps is the bench press. It involves lying on a bench and lifting a barbell or dumbbell from chest level to full extension.

Isolation exercises

Isolation exercises target a specific muscle group and is often used for bodybuilding and aesthetic purposes. While they may not be as effective for overall strength and muscle mass as compound exercises, they can help to improve muscle definition and symmetry. Here are some popular isolation exercises:

  • Bicep curls: Bicep curls are a classic isolation exercise that targets the biceps, the muscles in the front of the upper arm. They can be performed with dumbbells, barbells, or resistance bands.
  • Tricep extensions: Tricep extensions target the triceps, the muscles in the back of the upper arm. They can be performed with dumbbells, barbells, or cables.
  • Leg extensions: Leg extensions target the quads, the muscles in the front of the thigh. They involve lifting a weight with the feet while seated on a machine.

Where can I find more resources for weightlifting?

Weightlifting resources can be found in a variety of places, including:

  • Online resources: There are many websites and online resources that offer information and demonstrations of weightlifting exercises. Some popular sites include, Muscle and Strength, and Fitness Blender.
  • Fitness apps: There are a ton of fitness apps that provide workout schedules and weightlifting routines. Popular applications include Fitbod, StrongLifts 5×5, and JEFIT.
  • Gym equipment: If you belong to a gym, there is likely a variety of weightlifting equipment available, such as dumbbells, barbells, and weight machines. Many gyms also offer classes or personal training sessions that focus on weightlifting exercises.
  • Personal trainers: If you are new to weightlifting, hiring a personal trainer can be a great way to learn the proper form and technique for different exercises. A trainer can also help you create a personalized workout plan based on your goals and fitness level.

How to do weightlifting correctly?

Proper form and technique are essential for safe and effective weightlifting. Here are some tips for performing weightlifting exercises with proper form:

  • Start with light weights: If you’re new to weightlifting, start with light weights and focus on proper form and technique. Increase the weight gradually as you get more accustomed to the movements.
  • Use a spotter: If you are lifting heavy weights, always use a spotter to ensure your safety. A spotter can help you lift the weight and can also assist you if you get stuck or need help.
  • Maintain proper posture: Keep your back straight and your core engaged throughout the exercise. Avoid arching your back or rounding your shoulders, as this can lead to injury.

In conclusion,

Weightlifting exercises are a great way to build strength, muscle mass, and endurance. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced lifter, incorporating a variety of compound and isolation exercises into your workout routine can help you achieve your fitness goals. Remember to always use proper form and technique, start with light weights, and use a spotter when necessary to ensure your safety.

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