T Nation

Young Jay Cutler

Quesiton-So if you dont look like that at age 18 and 19 you dont have much of a chance competing at there present size?

[quote]Mike T. wrote:

Quesiton-So if you dont look like that at age 18 and 19 you dont have much of a chance competing at there present size? [/quote]

Why is that flagged?

Either way, genetics are the primary factor in how large someone can get from training. No one is going to deny that. However, that doesn’t mean it is narrowed down to “people who were big at 18”. The guy who was skinny at 18 but gets big pretty quickly once they start eating more and lifting also has good genetics. Flex Wheeler would fall into that category along with Lou Ferrigno. Muscle shape and proportion are also affected largely by genetic factors.

Most people on the planet won’t even be able to build arms over 18" no matter what they do. That is why those who can are considered to be above average as far as genetic ability (which makes those who claim they are trying to actively avoid getting “too big” just sound stupid).

This guy:


has the genetics that most people on the planet won’t ever experience. No amount of weight lifting or hormonal tweeking will cause the 120lbs ab freak to look like that or perform that way.

interesting observations Professor.

those are incredible physiques for only being 18 years old, to be sure. I wouldnt mind acheiving Branch’s level of development in that video.

Jay was a solid 185 at 16, and by 18 he was tipping the scales at 265?? Thats amazing.

Arthur Jones was correct in describing the correlation between muscle belly length, and potential for growth. That is the only way to size up someones potential for being huge.

Jay was working construction since he was 14. Hard manual labour from early on helps as well. But then again, how many people train correctly and take GH?

[quote]Lonnie123 wrote:
interesting observations Professor.

those are incredible physiques for only being 18 years old, to be sure. I wouldnt mind acheiving Branch’s level of development in that video.

Jay was a solid 185 at 16, and by 18 he was tipping the scales at 265?? Thats amazing.[/quote]

At 2:15 in the video it says he is 216 it just sounds like 260 when they say it later on.

Arthur Jones was correct in describing the correlation between muscle belly length, and potential for growth. That is the only way to size up someones potential for being huge.

Can someone explain?

Egads I misread that I thought you said BELLY LENGTH (not muscle belly length) … as in, the length of your abdomen. That was 20 seconds of weirdness for me…

To compete and succeed these days you need:

  1. a solid strength foundation e.g oly, hard labour etc… throughout your early life

  2. solid eating in youth

  3. good muscle bellies and other things benefitical to appearance

  4. great response to steroids and GH and every other thing people are taking with maximal positive benefits and minimal unwanted negative effects

  5. dedication over decades

THAT is how competitive it is.

There are some genetic freaks who can get great results and skip some of those points e.g be drug free - but they will never be competitive against the many genetic freaks who do everything right.

Jay at 19 would have been a superstar in the 50s … 70s … 80s … take him back to 1900 and he would be the stuff of legends. Or would he? maybe the way to look at it is, if you brought the stars from those times forward to today, they would be 10x as good with modern knowledge, supplements, and other things.

[quote]MAS50 wrote:
Arthur Jones was correct in describing the correlation between muscle belly length, and potential for growth. That is the only way to size up someones potential for being huge.

Can someone explain?[/quote]

Here’s an excerpt from the best explanation I could think of…

http://www.drdarden.com/readTopic.do;jsessionid=C9FE8A2ACF98EF5EEF03C4E248F781C7.hydra?id=385235

" MUSCLE LENGTH ? THE KEY FACTOR

The length of your muscle bellies is the single most important factor in determining potential size. Your muscles attach to bone by tendons. If you surgically removed an entire muscle from your body with the tendons intact, you?d notice that the tendons at either end are composed of very dense tissue. Follow this dense tissue until it tapers into the muscle. Now cut the tendons off at both ends. What you?re left with is called the muscle belly, the meaty part of the tissue. The longer the muscle belly, the greater the cross-sectional area and volume can become.

Bodybuilders with huge muscles, or the potential for developing them, have short tendons and long muscle bellies. For a muscle to be wide, it must be exceptionally long. An exceptionally long muscle doesn?t have to be wide, but it has the potential to be and it responds quickly to proper training.

While simple in theory, the muscle-length connection is still widely ignored. I remember well the first time I heard Arthur Jones discuss the topic in 1973. Jones used the concept of aspect ratio to make it clear. Aspect ratio deals with the relationship between an object?s length and width.

For example, framed pictures that you display on the wall have an established width-to-height ratio that is pleasing to the eye. The standard five-by-seven-inch or eight-by-ten-inch photograph fall into this category. Vary significantly from this aspect ratio and the picture doesn?t look right ? it doesn?t work, it doesn?t function correctly.

A similar aspect ratio, Jones reasoned, applies to muscles. For muscle to function, it must contract or shorten. During contraction, the thin actin filaments within the involved muscle fibers are pulled toward the thick myosin filaments. What happens is similar to interlacing your fingertips and smoothly pushing them together and then pulling them apart. Since most muscles have a teardrop-like shape, as the fibers enlarge, the angle of pull on the tendon becomes less and less direct. Past a certain size, the muscle ? or at least part of it ? would fail to contract. It simply would not function. Its aspect ratio would not allow it to work.

In other words, a short muscle cannot be very wide because its angle of pull would be so poor that it would not be able to contract efficiently. The body, therefore, would not allow a short, wide muscle to develop.

To function effectively, a wide muscle must be long. And the length of your muscles is 100 percent genetically determined. You cannot lengthen them through exercise, nutrition, drugs, or anything else.

Some of the most easily measured muscle lengths are the biceps and triceps of the upper arms. How do you determine if you have long, average, or short muscle bellies in your upper arms?

I describe and illustrate biceps and triceps potential in chapter 7, pages 56-59, of my new HIT book. Please take a few minutes to review that section. The key factor is where your biceps and triceps muscles attach to the tendons that cross your elbow joint.

By applying the suggested tests and measurements in the HIT book, you can estimate your biceps and your triceps growth potential using the rating scale: great, good, average, poor, and bad."

[quote]TheSofaKing wrote:
MAS50 wrote:
Arthur Jones was correct in describing the correlation between muscle belly length, and potential for growth. That is the only way to size up someones potential for being huge.

Can someone explain?

Here’s an excerpt from the best explanation I could think of…

" MUSCLE LENGTH ? THE KEY FACTOR

The length of your muscle bellies is the single most important factor in determining potential size. Your muscles attach to bone by tendons. If you surgically removed an entire muscle from your body with the tendons intact, you?d notice that the tendons at either end are composed of very dense tissue. Follow this dense tissue until it tapers into the muscle. Now cut the tendons off at both ends. What you?re left with is called the muscle belly, the meaty part of the tissue. The longer the muscle belly, the greater the cross-sectional area and volume can become.

Bodybuilders with huge muscles, or the potential for developing them, have short tendons and long muscle bellies. For a muscle to be wide, it must be exceptionally long. An exceptionally long muscle doesn?t have to be wide, but it has the potential to be and it responds quickly to proper training.

While simple in theory, the muscle-length connection is still widely ignored. I remember well the first time I heard Arthur Jones discuss the topic in 1973. Jones used the concept of aspect ratio to make it clear. Aspect ratio deals with the relationship between an object?s length and width.

For example, framed pictures that you display on the wall have an established width-to-height ratio that is pleasing to the eye. The standard five-by-seven-inch or eight-by-ten-inch photograph fall into this category. Vary significantly from this aspect ratio and the picture doesn?t look right ? it doesn?t work, it doesn?t function correctly.

A similar aspect ratio, Jones reasoned, applies to muscles. For muscle to function, it must contract or shorten. During contraction, the thin actin filaments within the involved muscle fibers are pulled toward the thick myosin filaments. What happens is similar to interlacing your fingertips and smoothly pushing them together and then pulling them apart. Since most muscles have a teardrop-like shape, as the fibers enlarge, the angle of pull on the tendon becomes less and less direct. Past a certain size, the muscle ? or at least part of it ? would fail to contract. It simply would not function. Its aspect ratio would not allow it to work.

In other words, a short muscle cannot be very wide because its angle of pull would be so poor that it would not be able to contract efficiently. The body, therefore, would not allow a short, wide muscle to develop.

To function effectively, a wide muscle must be long. And the length of your muscles is 100 percent genetically determined. You cannot lengthen them through exercise, nutrition, drugs, or anything else.

Some of the most easily measured muscle lengths are the biceps and triceps of the upper arms. How do you determine if you have long, average, or short muscle bellies in your upper arms?

I describe and illustrate biceps and triceps potential in chapter 7, pages 56-59, of my new HIT book. Please take a few minutes to review that section. The key factor is where your biceps and triceps muscles attach to the tendons that cross your elbow joint.

By applying the suggested tests and measurements in the HIT book, you can estimate your biceps and your triceps growth potential using the rating scale: great, good, average, poor, and bad."

[/quote]

Albert Beckles alone proved that wrong. Anyone even caught up in trying to pin point their limitations long before they are ever truly come close to them will likely never ever come close to them.

I wonder how many people this mentality has held back.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
Anyone even caught up in trying to pin point their limitations long before they are ever truly come close to them will likely never ever come close to them.

I wonder how many people this mentality has held back.[/quote]

Billions. People love excuses and hate hard work.

[quote]Professor X wrote:

Albert Beckles alone proved that wrong. Anyone even caught up in trying to pin point their limitations long before they are ever truly come close to them will likely never ever come close to them.

I wonder how many people this mentality has held back.[/quote]

This ‘mentality’ is realistic… but it in no way has to hold anybody back from working as hard as they can. Beckles biceps were not exceptionally long, but freakishly peaked. He’s just at one end of the bell curve. You say he proved it wrong, I say he was the exception that proved it right.

For the vast vast majority of people, this guideline is the most accurate way to judge potential… but I agree with you that it should never be used as an excuse not to try.

[quote]TheSofaKing wrote:
Professor X wrote:

Albert Beckles alone proved that wrong. Anyone even caught up in trying to pin point their limitations long before they are ever truly come close to them will likely never ever come close to them.

I wonder how many people this mentality has held back.

This ‘mentality’ is realistic… but it in no way has to hold anybody back from working as hard as they can. Beckles biceps were not exceptionally long, but freakishly peaked. He’s just at one end of the bell curve. You say he proved it wrong, I say he was the exception that proved it right.

For the vast vast majority of people, this guideline is the most accurate way to judge potential… but I agree with you that it should never be used as an excuse not to try.

[/quote]

Why, pray tell, would most people even remotely concerned with bodybuilding need to “judge potential”? What POSSIBLE use could that have other than to cause some people to not try as hard?

This is bodybuilding. Your “potential” doesn’t mean shit until you reach it. Period. There are hundreds of people with great genetics that don’t even lift regularly. As such, they will NEVER reach their “potential”.

There are thousands of people who have less “potential” but who are willing to work even harder than those with greater “potential”. As such, they will pass those individuals up as far as progress REGARDLESS OF POTENTIAL.

That makes this mentality POINTLESS other than to cause those far removed from their “potential” to avoid ever coming close to it.

Beckles proved that long tendons and short muscle bellies didn’t mean someone couldn’t get big. That means anyone else out there like him who would avoid even trying because of long tendons WOULD BE MISTAKEN. That is why this mentality is wrong.

Why did any of that even need an explanation?

Take a look at Boyer Coe. The guy had some of the weirdest (in the bad way) muscle insertions ever. Someone should’ve told him that he had no potential in bodybuilding before he won almost every title possible except Mr. Olympia.

Also, very few people have either all long muscle bellies or all short muscle bellies. Most are a mix. Arnold had a full chest and biceps, but his calves had a very high insertion. Franco had probably the lowest lat insertion ever, but his biceps were inserted very high.

Bottom line is muscle bellies in no way predetermine success or failure in bodybuilding.

[quote]Professor X wrote:

Why, pray tell, would most people even remotely concerned with bodybuilding need to “judge potential”?
[/quote]

I never said anyone “needed” to judge potential. What I did was suggest the method that in my opinion, was the most accurate one to use. Some people might judge their potential using this method and discover they have excellent genetics. This might help their motivation and focus, and help them actualize their potential faster.

Someone else may have difficulties sticking with a program because they don’t look like Jay Cutler after 6 months. Perhaps more realistic expectations would have either A)kept someone who didn’t possess the fortitude and dedication, out of the gym in the first place, or B) caused greater satisfaction from reaching more attainable goals.

The point is that someone’s motivation for wanting or not wanting to gauge their potential is up to them, and also not something I made any recommendations for or against.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
Why did any of that even need an explanation?
[/quote]

I agree with pretty much everything you said. Especially that people shouldn’t use perceived limitations as an excuse not to try. So it didn’t need explanation, so much as you needed to do the explaining. What a shock.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
TheSofaKing wrote:
Professor X wrote:

Why, pray tell, would most people even remotely concerned with bodybuilding need to “judge potential”? What POSSIBLE use could that have other than to cause some people to not try as hard?
[/quote]

Was it Poliquin that said you can find the good athletes by measuring grip strength of 12 year old boys? Thats a good age to crush hopes and dreams.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
Mike T. wrote:

This guy:


has the genetics that most people on the planet won’t ever experience. No amount of weight lifting or hormonal tweaking will cause the 120lbs ab freak to look like that or perform that way.[/quote]

He’s got some functional strength

[quote]TheSofaKing wrote:
Arthur Jones was correct in describing the correlation between muscle belly length, and potential for growth. That is the only way to size up someones potential for being huge.[/quote]

Bullshit!

I have very short biceps (can fit 2 fingers plus change) into the crook of my bicep and i have over 18 inch biceps.

Look at HHH from wwe.Has very short biceps yet he has arms that measure well over the 20 inch mark.

So people with short muscle bellies can become huge but it just might take a little more hard work then for the “genetically gifted”

[quote]King of Kings wrote:
TheSofaKing wrote:
Arthur Jones was correct in describing the correlation between muscle belly length, and potential for growth. That is the only way to size up someones potential for being huge.

Bullshit!

I have very short biceps (can fit 2 fingers plus change) into the crook of my bicep and i have over 18 inch biceps.

Look at HHH from wwe.Has very short biceps yet he has arms that measure well over the 20 inch mark.

So people with short muscle bellies can become huge but it just might take a little more hard work then for the “genetically gifted”
[/quote]

You’ve argued against your own point. In your last statement you’ve stated essentially that people with long muscle bellies are “genetically gifted” with respect to muscular size. Nobody, most of all Jones, ever claimed that it was impossible to get huge with short muscles…simply that long ones will grow faster, easier, and larger.

If two young aspiring bodybuilders were starting out, both roughly equal in every facet, except one had long muscle bellies, and the other had very short muscle bellies. Which one would you wager money on growing more lean tissue?