T Nation

Sports Illustrated

If you guys have not picked up the most recent issue of SI, you really need to. A few pages in, there is a 6-8 page spread showing the different athletic body types. I thought it was fascinating and a little suprising to tell the truth. Anyways, pick it up and take a look. It spans most sports and covers both men and women. Every pick is to scale compared to the next and it really interesting to see a 700 lb sumo wrestler next to an 80 lb jockey or to see Lisa Leslie standing next to a midget figure skater like Tara Lipinski.

I’ll check that out. Thanks!

I checked it out other day and was going to post about it. I was really surprised that so few of them had good leg development. With the exception of the sprinters, Terrell Owens, and Kamali (duh), a lot of them weren’t the genetic freaks that I expected them to be. Good stuff!

Thanks, Jason for this info! I’ll be picking up the issue today!

What did you expect to see from a “genetic freak?” Someone with very low bodyfat levels? I think it is a common misconception that low bodyfat translates into athletic performance. It is what the muscles do that is important. When I went to an Ian King seminar, his quote was, “I see fatties winning the gold medals all the time.” Whenever I drop bodyfat to a point I can clearly see my abs, my energy is sapped. If I were a competing athlete, I would probably maintain a moderate bodyfat, like in the 14% range.

I would feel like a fat cow at 14%BF. 8-9% is better.

Don’t call me a fat cow!! lol.

Sorry!!! I can’t help it, I’m a skinny bastard.

I agree to an extent. One’s bodyfat set point is somewhat important, but let’s not forget that VO2 max is enhanced at lower body fat percentages (to a point of diminishing returns when immunity is compromised), especially in weight bearing sports. Why else would Poliquin be so concerned with manipulating carbup frequency? He tries to keep his athletes at 8% or below. I wasn’t expecting to see shredded monsters; I was just commenting on how much different most of these athletes (especially the NBA guys) look without their uniforms. Honestly, did you expect to see a pot belly on Stephon Marbury?

Bodyfat doesn’t affect performence??? Try wearing a 10-15lb. vest and tell me if you don’t notice a difference in quickness, agility, etc. Yo

Stephan Marbury has a pot belly?!? LMAO. I gotta check that out now.

I guess it just goes to show you, some guys take their genetic gifts for granted. Rather than refine their gifts and make themselves unstoppable, they just live with what they have and become pretty good.

I must agree - Marbury was the biggest suprise.

I also expected Kim Chevesky (sp?) to weigh more than 135. I guess it’s because she’s getting away from bodybuilding now in favor of fitness.

I haven’t checked out the issue yet, but it would not surprise me to see some fatties. For example, I saw Apolo Anton Ohno without his shirt on, on a previous issue, and he look quite flabby. Someone like Charles Barkley, will never, and never had, a classical basketball body, like MJ, but he nevertheless was a phenomenal athlete. Get his bodyfat to David Robinson level and I think you’ll see his performance decline.

I think it is simplistic to think that lower is better, as far as bodyfat goes. I think there is a confusion over cause and effect. Most sprinters are gifted by being heavily muscled while being very lean, by nature. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to get lean in order to be a sprinter. Get someone who is naturally very fast, but chubby, and make him lose fat to extremely low levels, and you’ll sap his strength. Sure, if you are carrying extreme levels of fat (like Jared in his pre-Tubway days), the extra weight will be a detriment, but the extra strength that comes with a 4-5% extra BF will certainly outweigh (no pun intended) the extra mass for SOME athletes.

Speaking of sap, Warren Sapp, in my opinion, would never do well if he was as lean as Jevon Kearse, though both excell as defensive linemen.

Oftentimes the increase in bodyfat on an individual is more than made up for by the increase in leverage. Although I think subcataneous fat is quite useless especially when it tends to congregate in one specific area a case can be made for interstitial fat being able to improve athletic performance.

So, Ko picked up this issue last night. And I was able to quickly thumb through it. Very interesting. However the pic of Kim Chevesky (gawd, how do you spell that gal’s last name?!), was taken AFTER she formally left bodybuilding and began her fitness training. I’m amazed they didn’t have a fitness competitor in the mix.

But again, interesting. And definitely a issue to keep in the "archives". But, you know what? Them distance runners are waaaaaay too thin.

Just picked up the issue last night. It made me feel a lot better about my physique, looking at all these topflight athletes. I guess looking at bodybuilding magazines distorts one’s standards. Stephon Marbury does look a bit soft, but a potbelly would be a slight exaggeration. I thought that female high jumper looked the best (forgot her name). The layout gave me a reality check. Bodybuilding (as opposed to weightlifting) is a purely aesthetic pursuit, not an athletic one.

Whats the date on this magazine? I looked at a few recent ones Oct7 on Sep.30 of Sports Illustrated and didn’t see this article. Thanks

The date is Oct. 14th I believe.

I checked it out last night. A lot of the athletes surprised me. Especially basketball players, they seemed real lanky. Jason Kidd just looked strange.

i was very un-impressed by the phisiques of these top athletes. I had 2 kids who were on my football team who are currently d1 players, they also played basketball in highschool. and they both had incredible phisiques, they looked like batman, they were specimins. also one of there dads was a pro bodybuilder, that probably doesn’t hurt.