Having the V-taper will make you look super aesthetic, improve your body language, your posture and hence will boost your self-confidence. One can say it is a multiplying factor for sexiness and handsomeness, when it comes to the dating scene.

If you’re looking to develop the v-taper and look supremely aesthetic, you’re at the right place. Now, it ain’t gonna happen overnight so you need to have some patience and you need to follow this guide with consistency. Trust me its gonna be worth it.

Step 1 – The upper part of the ‘V’

For building the wider upper body we will first start with shoulders.

Shoulder (deltoid) consists of three muscle heads namely :

  • Anterior head: The front part.
  • Medial head: The side part.
  • Posterior head: This is the rear part.

Shoulder workouts for V-taper

Start your shoulder workout with 2-3 warm-up sets of push-ups. This will get the blood flowing through your shoulder muscles and get you ready to smash the workout.

Seated overhead dumbbell presses

Holly Watters helps her husband Michael, do a seated dumbbell press
Holly Watters helps her husband Michael, do a seated dumbbell press during a workout at Anytime Fitness gym in Bossier City, La., May 15, 2013. Holly is a crew chief and Air Reserve Technician (ART) assigned to the 917th Maintenance squadron as well as a National Physique Committee (NPC) National Level Figure Competitor, who is in training for The Louisiana State Championships in Lafayette this July. (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Jeff Walston)

This is the perfect exercise which targets all the 3 shoulder heads.

  • 1st set : Focus for doing 12 reps at 80% failure.
  • 2nd set : Focus for 15 reps with the same weight.
  • 3rd set : Reps till 100% failure.

Front dumbbell raises

Personal Trainer doing front dumbell raises for training his deltoids

Go lighter on this one and try doing 3 sets of 15 reps each side. Lift wrist to shoulder level height and not above it. This exercise will develop your shoulder’s anterior head.

Lateral dumbbell raises

Lateral dumbbell raises gif

This will target the medial head of the shoulders. This exercise is super important to get the V-taper as this exercise specially contributes to the shoulder wideness.

  • Do 3 sets of 12-15 slow and controlled reps.
  • Bend your elbows a bit and wrist should not go above the elbow level.

Note: Try doing this workout twice a week. Do this workout on push-days, either with the chest or with the triceps.

Step 2 – The ‘taper’ part

Developing lats will give that Tapering appearance that starts with the width and slowly narrows down. This is the transition between the wider shoulders and a thin waist.

This part makes 70% of the overall V-taper.

Workout for lats

Begin this workout with a sweet warm-up set of pull-ups.

Barbell rows

  • One of the best exercises for overall back development.
  • 3 heavy sets of 10-12 perfect reps will just be great.

A lot of chances of going wrong with the form of this one. Bend down, keep your knees unlocked and pull the weight towards your lower chest. Keep your back straight and chest out.

Single arm dumbell row

Senior Airman Paul Dell
Senior Airman Paul Dell, 319th Logistics Readiness Squadron vehicle operator journeyman, muscles through a bent-over row using a 150 lb. dumbbell, the highest weight available, July 27, 2017, at the fitness center on Grand Forks Air Force Base, N.D. Dell spent 16 weeks preparing to compete in the 2017 Med-City Muscle Classic as a classic physique competitor. (U.S Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ryan Sparks)

Do 3 sets of 15 reps each side. Now this exercise is almost similar to the barbell rows but its always better to do 3-3 sets of little different variation than doing 6 sets of same exercise.

Lat pulldown machine

lat pulldown machine exercise
  • Try doing 3-4 sets of this with 12-15 slow and controlled reps.

This exercise solely targets on developing the wideness of the back and hence is the golden exercise for the V-taper.

Serratus pulls

Serratus pulls muscles effected
  • Bent over with the back straight and chest out.
  • You can go light on the weight for this exercise.
  • Use ropes for more mobility.

End this lats workout with a clean and nice one set of wide grip pull-ups. Try going for 100% failure with this one. As this is a bigger muscle group it needs more time for recovery and hence we should train the lats muscles once a week.

Step 3 – The importance of diet

meal prep bowls

Till now we’ve been focusing on building the key muscles for the V-taper. Just workout alone won’t make your muscles grow. We need to feed them with the right nutrition. Let’s see what diet to follow.

This is gonna look tough, but once you try it, you’ll find it relatively easy to design your own diet to build those key muscles for V-taper. You need to find your maintenance calories first. This is the number of calories you need to eat daily in order to maintain your current weight.

So, now to gain the upper body size you need to be in a caloric surplus i.e you need to consume 300-400 kcals more than your maintenance calories every day.

Fortunately, you don’t need to do all that math because there are helpful calorie calculators out there which will help to find the estimated amount of calories you need to consume to build the V-taper muscles.

This calorie calculator from Top10Supps and this Body Weight Planner from NIH are some one of the better ones I’ve come across.

Now you’ve found just the amount of calories you have to eat to build muscles.

For example: Assume that the calculator shows you need to eat 3000 kcals every day to build muscles. These calories consist of 3 main macro-nutrients


You should aim to consume 1 gram of protein per pound of your bodyweight.

  • i.e if you weigh 160 lbs you should eat 160 grams of proteins every day.

Note: 1 gram protein = 4 kcals.

So 4 times 160 = 640.

Hence 640 kcals out of 3000 kcals should come from proteins.


50% of your daily calories should be carbs; 50% of 3000 is 1500.

  • i.e 1500 kcals out off 3000 kcals should come from carbs.

Note: 1 gram of carbohydrate = 4 kcals. So 1500 divided by 4 = 375 grams.

Hence you should aim to consume  around 375 grams (1500 kcals ) of carbs every day.


The remainder of your calories should come from fats.

  • i.e 3000-(640+1500)=860

Hence 860 kcals should come from fats.

Note: Now 1 grams fat = 9 calories. So 860 divided by 9 = 95 .

Therefore you should aim to consume around 95 grams of fat every day.

Things to keep in mind

  • Focus on consuming complex carbs rather than simple carbs.
  • Try to consume good fats from sources like:
  • flax seeds,
  • fish oil,
  • avocado,
  • cheese,
  • nuts, etc rather than bad fat sources like junk foods.
  • Consume most of the carbs in the breakfast meal, pre-workout meal and post-workout meal.
  • Consume at least 30 of proteins within a half hour after the workout.

Do not take a surplus of more than 500 kcals. If you take the caloric surplus of more than 500 calories, you may gain muscles faster but you will also gain fat which will destroy your waistline.

Then you’d need to work on losing fat and this will make your goal of getting the V-taper that much more difficult. Best to play it safe!

Final say on achieving the V-Taper

Professional pull up workout exercise back lats muscles

So, in a nutshell:

  • work on building wider shoulder muscles,
  • build the lats muscle to get the tapered look,
  • eat in a slight caloric surplus of about 350 calories to gain muscles for V-taper without destroying the waistline.

Feel free to post any questions you may have in the comments below!

Stock Photos from Shutterstock