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5 Reasons Why a Dad Bod Is a Good Thing

man with child on shoulders making muscles next to setting sun
More than half of women who responded to a recent Planet Fitness survey think dad bods are sexy.

by Mary Lambkin

Breaking news for all dads with a little "extra" around the middle: Your body is actually the definition of "sexy" for more than half of the female population!

In fact, seven out of ten women think that the "dad bod" is attractive, according to a recent Planet Fitness study. Not only did female respondents say that a dad bod is sexy, they also said it's an indicator of confidence and happiness — two traits that are definitely appealing. Curious to learn what else makes a dad bod a good thing? We've got the answers.

What Is the Dad Bod, Exactly?

Before we expand on the reasons why a dad bod is a good thing, let's define it. The dad bod is relatively fit, but neither muscular nor lean. Some people like to say that those sporting the dad bod are in shape, but also carry a little extra.

Why the Dad Bod Is a Good Thing

The dad bod is something to admire for a number of different reasons. Here are five aspects of the dad bod that you might not have considered, but should definitely know.

1. It Is Just as Capable

Having a dad bod does not mean you're unhealthy or weak. It means you're strong and able to meet the challenging (and ever-changing) demands of a father, which include everything from coaching Little League to assembling strollers.

Whereas some athletes might need a whole day to rest and recover after a lengthy exercise routine, dads have the amazing ability to squeeze in a quick workout and then power through an afternoon of fatherly duties. The demands of a modern dad are high — so it makes sense that, with everything you have to balance, you might have an extra few pounds. And that's totally OK!

2. The Dad Bod Puts Family First

The sexiest dads are the ones who think of their family before themselves. Before kids entered the picture, spouses may have admired their partners' chiseled muscles and bachelor-style bods — but as soon as children arrived, priorities (and attractions) tend to shift. What makes a mother's heart race? Seeing her husband unload the dishwasher and then drive the kids to soccer practice.

Sure, you might have to sacrifice a gym session to get it all done, but putting your family first means you value building family memories more than building the biggest bicep among your buddies.

3. It Is (Mostly) Healthy

If you want to maintain perfect health, it's no secret that foods like French fries, chicken nuggets, and ice cream are best avoided (most of the time). But balancing the schedules of every family member is no small feat. Sometimes fast food is your only option if you want to make it to all of your family's obligations on time. And when your daughter scores her first goal in a soccer match, that calls for a celebratory ice cream.

We love the dad bod because it's not overly strict when it comes to dieting. Although dad bod-ers do watch what they eat, they're certainly not going to complain if the kids decide to order pizza one night.

4. The Dad Bod Is Sexy

Our Planet Fitness survey found that more than half of women think dad bods are sexy and even prefer the dad bod over muscular men. Wondering why? For starters, the dad bod is associated with attractive personality traits — like a strong sense of humor, a down-to-earth mentality, and a healthy respect for work/life balance. Additionally, the dad bod is refreshingly real; built not solely of muscle, but heart, as well.

Of course, this isn't to say men who enjoy sporting dad bods don't have plenty of muscle to prove their manliness — they just also have the right number of imperfections to prove their authenticity. And both of those things are really sexy.

5. It Is Realistic and Familiar

Simply put, people love the dad bod because it's real. A dad bod is not the result of long hours at the gym, a crazy-strict diet, or any performance-enhancing supplements. It's the result of a balanced, healthy lifestyle that includes broccoli and bicep curls but also welcomes burgers and birthday parties. It's all about balance!