Why can you have a lot of muscle but be weak or be strong while looking small?

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There are many weightlifters around 70kg with ridiculous squats and also bodybuilders twice the size, struggling a lot with the same lift. I know they train different skills and practice is a factor but could the bodybuilder transform their muscle fibers into stronger ones or do they differ so much that you essentially have to regrow “stronger” muscles from the ground up?

In: Biology

I’m not a kinesiologist, but from my own past research and experience there’s a lot in play in examples like these.

Some factors include:
Form/Technique – such as foot placement, hand placement on weights, the alignment of your body from head to toe, etc. Form and technique play MASSIVE roles in not just how much you can lift, but how you much you can lift SAFELY.

Ligament/Tendon strength – whole often overlooked, these are critically important attachment points for both bones and muscle. Think about the difference in weight capacity of a nail vs a paper clip or better, cheap twine vs weight-rated ropes. Twine can snap very easily, no matter how strong the objects are that it’s attached to; it’s often a weak point.

Muscle fibers – yes, there are different types and they can vary in density.

These aren’t all of the factors, but some important basic ones. What you’re describing sounds like differences in form and technique more than anything else.