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Average Human Height

Average Human Height
The tallest man to live on the planet was 8 ft 11 in, while the shortest man is 1 ft 8 in. These, however, are extreme cases, with the average height being 5.7 ft for males and 5.3 ft for females.
Abhijit Naik
Did You Know?
In 1989, renowned American economic historian, John Komlos coined the term anthropometric history for the study of the history of human height. The average human height at a given point of time is an apt indicator of the conditions prevailing at that time. A study undertaken by the Ohio State University revealed that the average height for European males of the 17th century was a few inches less than what it is today. Researchers believe that this was due to the extremely cold weather conditions prevailing during that period. Such deviations have been observed in various parts of the world throughout the history.
Factors Determining Human Height

There are quite a few factors which play a crucial role in determining our average height. Most prominent among these are human genetics, environment, and gender.
  • ❍ The human genome, which dictates the height of an individual, is passed on to a person by the parents, and hence, there are significant chances that the child of a person with short stature, will be short in height.
  • ❍ Environment does play a vital role in determining how tall an individual can be. An apt example of this would be the European male from the 17th century.
  • ❍ And lastly, we have the gender factor, according to which males in general are observed to be taller than females.
Average Height in Humans

On an average, a normal adult attains a height of anywhere between 5 ft - 6 ft. The average height of a man in Netherlands is 5 ft 11 in, while the same in Indonesia is 5 ft 2 in. Similarly, the average height of a woman in Netherlands is 5 ft 7 in, whereas in Indonesia, it is 4 ft 10 in.
The average height for American males is 5 ft 9.9 in, while the same for females is 5 ft 4.3 in. That is well within the range of the world average of 5 to 6 ft. However, the trend is not the same all over the world. In Peru, for instance, the average height for males is 5 ft 4 in, which is roughly at par with the average height for females in the United States. Such variation can be seen throughout the world.
It has also been noted that females reach their stipulated average height at a younger age compared to males.
Additionally, there are some extreme cases. With a height of 8 ft 11.1 in (2.72 m), Robert Wadlow from Illinois, United States, was the tallest man to ever live on the planet. On the other hand, Khagendra Thapa Magar from Nepal, measuring mere 22 in, is the shortest man on the Earth.
Measuring height can be a tricky task, considering that our spine shrinks at a particular time of the day, as a result of which we lose a few centimeters. As for the average height for a said country, you can get a rough idea by calculating the same for males and females. While height abnormalities like dwarfism do exist, these are quite rare, and hence, don't really affect the statistics.
Measuring height
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