Lately I’m finding myself almost astonished about how many huge people there seem to be. I can think of four people in my office who tower over me by a head, or so it seems. Most of my friends in high school were taller than I by at least a couple of inches, so it’s not like I’m accustomed to being the tallest guy around, but this is getting ridiculous. MOre and more, I find that if I don’t make the effort to crane my neck upwards, I am looking people in the chest, the thorax, the shoulder, and so on, rather than the face. One of these tall people is an Asian-American woman, and they didn’t used to be known for their height.
Also most of these people appear to be younger than I by 10 or 15 years, in case that might be a factor.
Anyone else noticing this? Are the youngest adult generations inches taller than the rest of us?
I don’t know. How tall are you? I’m 5’10" which is about average and I feel about average height. If I’m in a bar, I can see above about half of the guys there. I have a few friends who are 6’5" but I for every one of them there’s someone under 5’9"
In the beginning of summer, I noticed the same thing. I work in a museum, and we had dozens of school field-trip groups visit. The vast majority of the kids-- and I’m talking six and seventh graders, here-- were bigger than I am.
I’m 5’4’’ and about 115 lbs. Even many of the fourth graders were both taller and wider than I. Not just the heavy kids, but the average kid’s bone structure was larger than mine, wider in the shoulders and ribs, longer in the limbs. I felt like a midget.
I’m 5’10+ which has always been fairly tall for a woman. Just this last weekend at Sams, I have two checkers that were both several inches taller than me. Both were 20-somethings and I even asked if they were standing on an elevation or something because I was so surprised that I “felt short”.
There is a very gradual increase in the average height of the adult American, but it’s on the order of a quarter of an inch in twenty years. You can’t be noticing that. You are just noticing some random variation in height among the people you know. Really. I know that people like to believe that they can keep track of things like the average height of the hundreds of people they meet each day, but that’s just not possible. It’s very easy to be fooled by imagining trends in your random observations.
I think it also depends on where you’re located, and the corresponding population: I’m 5’7", and when I go someplace with lots of first generation immigrants (like New York), I feel like average height. But when I go out west, to someplace like Arizona or California, I feel like a little guy.
Perhaps. But remember your data reflect the infusion of millions of Latinos, Asians and Middle Easterners who are slightly shorter, on average, that white and black Americans. If you factor out these groups, it’s possible that the height of white/black American adolescents has increased more than you cite.
This is true. In NYC at 5’10" 190 lbs, I’m more or less a sizable guy. Not huge, but large enough that I don’t feel crowded out in a bar or club. Especially if I’m with Asian or Indian friends. In Philly, it seems like everyone is linebacker huge and I feel like a little kid. Must be the cheese steaks.
Here has an interesting set of charts, based on a survey taken in 1988-1994
Charts for men and women, divided into “White”, “Black”, “Hispanic”, “Other”
From an eyeball viewing of these charts, it looks like there is a large increase in the “Other” height, with the younger samples. I’d assume that this catagory is mostly asian and native american. That would jive with what I’ve seen in young asian ancestory kids that I know.