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Puberty is what happens when your body starts to change from a boy’s body to a man’s body.

There are many signs given by the body to show that you are going through puberty, and everyone can experience something that is slightly different. Some boys can start going through puberty from as young as 9-years-old, and other boys will take much longer.  There is no need to try and rush this process. Every unique body will mature at its own pace, and there is nothing to worry about if your body takes a bit longer than some of your friends’ bodies.  You may have noticed that some of the girls in your class have started growing taller than you. That’s because girls usually get a head start when to comes to puberty. Girls may also mature at different times from one another, just like boys.

Some of the signs of puberty:


You may have noticed that you have started growing hair in new places on your body. Hormones like testosterone tell your body to start growing hair under your arms and around your genitals so that you can begin to start presenting as an adult. Some guys may grow hair on their chests, and other guys may never grow much hair there and in other places at all.  Some guys are hairy, and others are smooth. It all depends on the genes that you inherit from your parents.


You will notice that you or some of the other guys in your class will begin to develop bigger muscles. Whether you will develop bigger muscles all depends on the genetics that you inherit from your parents. Some guys are naturally muscular even without exercise, and other guys will stay slim or not get much muscle no matter how much they exercise.

Some guys will take illegal steroids to make themselves get bigger muscles.  This is extremely dangerous and can cause a lot of damage to your body.  Steroids can also have a terrible effect on your moods and even change your personality.  There is a very good reason why taking them is against the law.

The best way to work on your muscle growth is to make sure that you get plenty of sleep (so that your body can create muscle-growing hormones), eat healthy food with plenty of fresh fruit and vegetable, and avoid drugs and alcohol that could prevent you from growing strong and healthy.

Why do I smell?

When puberty kicks in and you start growing hair under your arms, you may notice that you begin to smell when you’ve been sweating.  This is normal.  The sweat itself isn’t smelly; it’s the bacteria that grows on your sweat now that you have hair under your arms and around your genitals that smells.   The best thing you can do is make sure that you shower or bath every day so that you can prevent the bacteria that causes the bad smell from growing.  You can also use deodorant, which can be scented or unscented, whatever you prefer.  Some people smell stronger than other people, and there are various reasons for that.  Remember that if someone does smell it doesn’t necessarily mean that the person isn’t clean or doesn’t use deodorant.  Also remember that not everyone can afford many clothes that can get washed every day. Be gentle and considerate to others about personal information like that.  It’s okay to tell a friend in privacy that they smell if they seem unaware of it.  It isn’t cool to make fun of someone because of the way they smell though. They may not be able to help it. 


Getting erections are a very normal part of growing up.  Some guys call it a “stiffy”, “hard-on”, “wood” or “uvukelwe”.   It can happen at any time of the day and doesn’t always happen when you become excited or horny.  You could get erect while you are asleep for example, seemingly for no reason.  It is the body’s way of making sure that everything is in good working order.


Sperm is the white gooey substance that comes out of your penis when you climax or ejaculate.  This can happen if you have been masturbating (playing with your penis) or it can happen in your sleep when you have a sexual dream. This is known as a wet dream.  Some boys take much longer to start producing sperm than others, and not all guys have wet dreams.  Some guys never have wet dreams at all and can only create sperm when they masturbate or are having sex.