Average Male Chest Size

How Your Chest Measures Up Compared to Other Fit Men

By: Jeremy Fox, CNC, CPTPublished: October 25, 2022

Most guys have a general idea of their chest size for buying shirts and jackets. But outside of your shirt size, you probably wonder how your chest compares to other men.

In this article, you’ll find average male chest size statistics to see exactly how you measure up. Plus, get expert tips on how to grow your chest size to fill out your shirts, feel confident, and look strong.

Average Male Chest Size

Data Collection Methods

This article refers to the chest circumference measurements obtained from the 2012 Anthropometric Survey of U.S. Army Personnel. With my engineering and statistical analysis background, I have compiled the numbers into tables and charts that are easier to understand.

Furthermore, as a certified fitness coach, I explain how these measurements relate to your overall health and fitness.

Why Is Chest Size Important for Men?

Knowing your chest size is necessary for buying tailored clothes that fit your body perfectly. But even casual clothing usually has size guides that help you find your shirt size based on chest circumference.

In addition, a solid muscular chest symbolizes masculinity and strength for men. So, a bigger chest is a desirable attribute and the primary reason guys spend so much time on the bench press at the gym!

Average Chest Size Factors

Naturally, you might wonder why some men have bigger chests than others. A few factors affect chest size.

First, chest size tends to increase with height. So, the taller you are, the larger your chest circumference will generally be.

In addition, the more body weight you have, the more likely you are to have a big chest as well. But this chest size usually comes from stored body fat, which is not what most guys want.

Lastly, muscle mass also increases chest size, which is why guys who work out typically have bigger chests than guys who don’t.

  • Height
  • Body Weight
  • Muscle Mass
Average Male Chest Size

How to Measure Chest Size Men

When discussing chest size, we usually reference chest circumference (the distance around). But you can also look at chest size in terms of width (side-to-side) and depth (front-to-back).

Chest Circumference Measurement

Chest circumference is the maximum horizontal distance around your chest at the fullest part, usually just above the nipples. This measurement is taken using a flexible tape while standing and looking straight ahead.

During a chest circumference measurement, keep your shoulders and arms relaxed. Also, do not fill your lungs with air or flex your chest. Instead, take the measurement at the end of a normal exhale.

Average Chest Circumference Men
Average Chest Size Men
Average Chest Size Measurements

Chest Width Measurement

Another measurement you can take is the width across your chest at about the armpit level. For this measure, a large caliper is the most accurate method. But you can also use a tape measure or ruler.

Chest Depth Measurement

Finally, you can measure the depth of your chest using a large caliper. This measurement represents the thickness of your chest from front to back at approximately nipple level.

Average Male Chest Size

To give you an idea of average male chest size measurements, I’ve compiled data from the 2012 anthropometric survey of US Army personnel. This massive study took chest circumference, width, and depth measurements from over 4,000 men.

Average Male Chest Circumference

According to this survey, the average male chest circumference is 41.7 inches (105.6 cm) with a standard range of 38.2 inches (97.1 cm) to 45.1 inches (114.6 cm)1.

That means any chest size below 38″ is smaller than average. And a chest size above 45″ is larger than normal.

Table 1 shows chest size percentiles for men, so you can get a better idea of where you fit relative to other guys. I’ve also included a chest size chart to make it easier to visualize the data.

Table 1. Male Chest Circumference Percentiles

  Inches Centimeters
1st 34.3″ 87.2 cm
2nd 35.2″ 89.4 cm
3rd 35.7″ 90.7 cm
5th 36.3″ 92.2 cm
10th 37.3″ 94.8 cm
15th 38.1″ 96.7 cm
20th 38.7″ 98.3 cm
25th 39.2″ 99.6 cm
30th 39.7″ 100.9 cm
35th 40.2″ 102.1 cm
40th 40.6″ 103.2 cm
45th 41.1″ 104.3 cm
50th 41.6″ 105.6 cm
55th 42.0″ 106.7 cm
60th 42.4″ 107.8 cm
65th 42.9″ 109.0 cm
70th 43.5″ 110.4 cm
75th 44.0″ 111.7 cm
80th 44.6″ 113.3 cm
85th 45.3″ 115.1 cm
90th 46.1″ 117.2 cm
95th 47.5″ 120.7 cm
97th 48.5″ 123.3 cm
98th 49.3″ 125.1 cm
99th 50.3″ 127.7 cm
Average Chest Size Chart

This chart shows the normal distribution of chest size for men. The higher the graph, the more men have the chest circumference displayed on the x-axis.

Average Male Chest Width

The average man has a chest width of 11.4 inches (28.9 cm) across. And the standard range is from 10.7 inches (27.2 cm) to 12.1 inches (30.8 cm).

Average Male Chest Depth

Finally, the average man has a chest depth of 10.0 inches (25.4 cm) from front to back. And the standard range is from 9.0 inches (22.8 cm) to 11.0 inches (28.0 cm).

Average Male Chest Size by Height

As I mentioned earlier, taller men typically have larger chests than shorter men. To demonstrate this relationship, I again used the 2012 anthropomorphic survey of US Army personnel.

This time, I took the chest circumference percentile data and matched it up with the height percentiles. Then I divided the chest column by the height column to get a chest-to-height ratio for various statures.

It table 2, you can see the average chest size by height and the corresponding chest-to-height ratio. Interestingly, it turns out that taller men have disproportionately larger chests than shorter men.

Table 2. Average Male Chest Size by Height

Height Chest Circumference Chest:Height Ratio
5’5″ (165 cm) 36.4″ (92.5 cm) 0.56
5’6″ (168 cm) 37.6″ (95.6 cm) 0.57
5’7″ (170 cm) 38.9″ (98.7 cm) 0.58
5’8″ (173 cm) 40.1″ (101.9 cm) 0.59
5’9″ (175 cm) 41.4″ (105.2 cm) 0.60
5’10” (178 cm) 42.7″ (108.5 cm) 0.61
5’11” (180 cm) 44.0″ (111.8 cm) 0.62
6’0″ (183 cm) 45.4″ (115.2 cm) 0.63
6’1″ (185 cm) 46.7″ (118.7 cm) 0.64
6’2″ (188 cm) 48.1″ (122.2 cm) 0.65
6’3″ (191 cm) 49.5″ (125.7 cm) 0.66

Ideal Male Chest Size

We have determined the average male chest size based on height from general anthropometric data. However, most guys want to build an aesthetic physique instead of an average body.

My recent article about the Greek God Body established that a chest-to-height ratio of 0.66 creates a classically muscular physique. In other words, your ideal chest size should be about 2/3 of your height.

Generally, taller men won’t have much trouble achieving this goal. But shorter guys will have to work hard on building their chest through diet and resistance training.

Ideal Chest Size for Men

Steve Reeves had some of the best proportions of all time. His relaxed chest circumference was about 48″, and he was 6’1″ tall, so his chest-to-height ratio was 0.66. He also had an insane chest-to-waist ratio.

How to Increase Chest Size

There are three main ways to increase your chest size using specific exercises and dietary strategies.

The first and most obvious is to hit the gym and build your pecs. But you can also increase your torso circumference by building your back and lats.

Lastly, you should focus on eating plenty of calories and protein to help build the muscle that increases your chest size.

1. Chest Building Exercises

Compound pressing movements like the bench press are the best exercises for building chest size. And you should include multiple pressing variations to hit your chest from every angle.

For example, flat presses work the entire chest from top to bottom. In comparison, incline and decline presses work the upper and lower chest, respectively.

Related: 11 Best Barbell Chest Exercises

In addition to exercise selection, you should also consider the rep ranges necessary to build your chest. I recommend training in the 8-12 rep range on most sets to elicit maximum hypertrophy (muscle growth).

Finally, ensure you’re using progressive overload, where you incrementally increase the weight each week to continue gaining strength and size.

Related: 30-Minute Dumbbell Chest and Triceps Workout

2. Widening Your Lats

It’s essential to realize that your chest circumference includes the width and depth of your back muscles, especially the latissimus dorsi or lats.

Therefore, focusing time and effort on your back workouts will greatly increase your upper body mass, including chest circumference. Specifically, I recommend using a combination of heavy pulldown and rowing exercises to build your back.

My YouTube channel has dozens of videos showing you how to do a variety of bodybuilding exercises. You’ll learn how to target and build specific muscle groups in 90 seconds or less. Click HERE to subscribe, or click on the button below!

3. Eating For Chest Mass

Last but not least, your diet is critical in increasing your chest size, or any muscle group for that matter!

The best way to ensure you gain muscle from training is by eating a surplus of calories. In other words, eat more calories than you burn, so your body uses the excess energy to build muscle.

Also, ensure you are eating enough protein to support muscle growth. Click here to try my free protein intake calculator.

bodybuilding meal plan

Custom Meal Plan & Workout Routines

Get a personalized meal plan designed specifically for your body and fitness goals. Including custom recipes formulated to fit your macros and calories – no counting required!

You can also get workouts tailored to your schedule and lifestyle. All this for just $24.99/mo! Click here to choose your plan.

Chest Size and Body Type

A small chest could signify that you have an ectomorph body type. This body type is associated with a faster metabolism and a lighter, leaner frame.

As an ectomorph, it’s generally harder for you to gain weight and mass even when you eat a lot of food. But you can get bigger using specific ectomorph diet and exercise strategies.

Next Step: Take My Free Body Type Quiz

Wrist Size Body Type

More Average Male Body Measurements

Now that you know how your chest compares to the average man, you might be interested to learn about other body measurements. Some of my other popular body size articles might interest you:

Average Waist Size For Men

Is a 30 Inch Waist Small for Men?

How Big Is the Average Man’s Neck?

Do You Have Small Wrists?

Are 16 Inch Arms Big?

If you liked this article, check out some of my other awesome content below. You’ll find helpful tips on nutrition, supplements, and workouts to reach your fitness goals faster.

Share with your community and get the conversation started!

By |October 25, 2022|Bodybuilding|0 Comments
Go to Top