I have been training hard for the last six months and have noticed some transformation. What bothers me, however, is that my arms have grown disproportionately. Even though I am right handed, my left arm is bigger by an inch. Feels like I am doing something wrong.
Another issue is with my lower back. I am not able to do much lifting. I am about 6’3″. Could my height be the reason?

Tshewang Dorji

Hi Tshewang,
Disparity in strength or imbalance in aesthetics is very common for someone just venturing into the world of weight training.
Naturally we are more dominant in terms of strength, balance and looks on either side, depending on many factors, whether you are right or left handed, the sports or physical activity you have consistently been involved in.
Truth be told, everything in nature is imbalanced; no straight lines exist. There is nothing called perfect proportion. That’s where we as humans with a big functional brain come to play and convert the imperfection into perfection. There are various ways you can go about correcting your disproportionate arm.

Tip of the week:

“A great physique is one that is not only muscular and strong, but also proportionate and balanced, creating a beautiful flow”

1. Focus mainly on unilateral movements (single joint movement). Single-arm dumbbell preacher curl, single-arm dumbbell concentration curl, making sure you lead with the stronger arm and match that lift with the weaker arm, even at the expense of self-spotting with the free arm.
2. Eliminating any direct arm training for the bigger arm, and training the weaker arm until it is at par, and also working the weaker arm twice per week is encouraged if your motivation is high and you are able to recover before the next arm session.
3. Learn to lift correctly, by which I mean perfect the technique and learn to make your muscle lift the weight, as opposed to just chasing a weight and ending up just mindlessly moving the weight and stroking your ego. Weight lifting and muscle building require two very different approaches resulting in two distinctly opposing results.
Deadlift is not necessary to build strong back; it is one of the many tools at your disposal to achieve a strong and muscular back.
Deadlift is a great compound exercise involving many muscles. It involves the trapezius muscle, erector spinae (lower back), glutes(buttock) and hamstring (back part of the thigh). I have clients standing more than 6’5″ tall, yet they perform heavy deadlift with no pain at all.
So you not being able to lift heavy weight has very little to do with your height. It could be technique and experience. Or it could be weak muscle involved in that lift.
You need to have an educated, passionate and experienced deadlifter watch and guide you.

Tshering Dorji (three times Mr Bhutan winner), is a certified fitness trainer and specialist in performance nutrition


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