Hi Joe – I’m 19 years old and I’m trying to get my shoulders as wide as possible. I’m 6’ and 180 lbs, so I’m trying to put on about 20 pounds of muscle anyway. But beyond that I want really wide shoulders. That looks impressive even in clothes. Problem is, it seems my shoulders structurally aren’t very wide. So is there anything I can do to actually stretch them out and make them wider? Thanks Joe!
From the sounds of it, you have somewhat narrow clavicles. The clavicles are the curved bones that run across the top of your ribcage out nearly to the ends of your shoulders. Their length, or lack thereof, is the biggest factor when it comes to the width of one’s shoulders, and unfortunately there’s nothing you can do to grow them.
While this bit of news may disappoint you what I will tell you next should hearten you. Just because you have narrow clavicles doesn’t mean you’re doomed to narrow shoulders. One of the all-time great bodybuilders who also happened to be the first Mr. Olympia, Larry Scott, also had narrow clavicles, but he didn’t let that stand in his way of becoming the best bodybuilder in the world. Larry set himself to the task of building cantaloupe-sized deltoids at the ends of his clavicles and in time becoming known for his shoulder development.
Larry saw his narrow clavicles as a challenge, not as a defeat. Through focused and intense training he managed to overcome his structural deficiency and become a champion. I encourage you to read about Larry and follow the routine he used to build his own shoulders. Just remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither were Larry’s delts. With patience and persistence you, too will reach your goals.