One often hears lower body accounts for 40% of total muscles mass. Going a step further, would it be possible to estimate for an average body, a given muscle group percentage of the total?

Is there a site which would list all muscles in the body by percentage?

For example: Quadriceps are 23% of the total muscles. Biceps are 10%....

Average, not precise, of course it would vary widely, just seeking averages.

  • Percentage based on weight, volume, etc?
    – rrirower
    Jan 19, 2015 at 19:36
  • 4
    That seems wildly variable. Look at a pro cyclists vs a guy just doing "chest" and "arms" in a gym.
    – Eric
    Jan 19, 2015 at 21:26
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    Agree with @EricKaufman - Even among cyclists there will be wild variation, look at a track cyclist versus a mountain specialist. (Chris Hoy vs. Bradley Wiggins). There is a huge variant between, well, everyone.
    – JohnP
    Jan 20, 2015 at 3:43
  • While I don't have a full answer to your question, its likely that finding an answer to your question might be derived from the McCallum formula that defines ideal measurements based on wrist circumference. If you have those numbers and some knowledge about math and bodily forms you might be able to attain the information you seek.
    – Pibara
    Jan 21, 2015 at 12:19
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    @EricKaufman I'm looking for 'average' numbers. There must be an average, for example one often hears lower body accounts for 40% of total muscles mass. If we take this one step further what would one muscle group be of the total? Just an average.
    – kmansoor
    Jan 21, 2015 at 15:27

1 Answer 1


I have managed to find a study (http://jap.physiology.org/content/89/1/81) where they measured the skeletal muscle mass of lower and upper body. Their sample was "large and heterogeneous" (468 people) so it's probably safe to say this table represents the average numbers (in the "All women" and "All men" rows):

Skeletal muscle mass distribution

*SM stands for skeletal muscle.

However, I was unable to find the average muscle mass data for smaller muscle groups or even individual muscles.

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