Are you in Canada? Click here to proceed to the HK Canada website.

For all other locations, click here to continue to the HK US website.

Human Kinetics Logo

Purchase Courses or Access Digital Products

If you are looking to purchase online videos, online courses or to access previously purchased digital products please press continue.

Mare Nostrum Logo

Purchase Print Products or eBooks

Human Kinetics print books and eBooks are now distributed by Mare Nostrum, throughout the UK, Europe, Africa and Middle East, delivered to you from their warehouse. Please visit our new UK website to purchase Human Kinetics printed or eBooks.

Feedback Icon Feedback Get $15 Off


Free shipping for orders over $99

Need to access your Online Course or Ebook?

Anthropometry measurements lab activity

This is an excerpt from Applied Biomechanics Lab Manual With HKPropel Online Video-Loose-Leaf Edition by John C. Garner,Charles Allen,Harish Chander & Adam C. Knight.


  • Paper
  • Pencil or pen
  • Tape measure
  • Calculator
  • Individual laboratory report
  • Group laboratory report


Anthropometry refers to the study of human body measurement and plays an important role in biomechanics, as well as industrial design, clothing design, ergonomics, and architecture.
For this laboratory activity, you will be making a series of anthropometric measures on yourself and a participant. You will also be making a series of calculations based on these measures and answering several questions related to your measures and calculations.
This lab activity is split into three steps that include measurements of basic overall body anthropometry followed by calculations in each of the sections.
Step 1: Fill out section I of the individual laboratory report and complete the calculations.
Step 2: Work with a partner and use the tools provided to make most of the anthropometric measures indicated in the diagram that follows. Record your measurements and complete the calculations in section II of the individual laboratory report (figure 2.1).
Step 3: Combine the data from the entire class to calculate averages for the same measures on the group laboratory report. Only the fraction of standing height is necessary.

Figure 2.1 Body segment lengths expressed as a fraction of body height H.
Figure 2.1 Body segment lengths expressed as a fraction of body height H.
Adapted from Drillis and Contini (1966).

Question Set 2.2

  1. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that body mass index (BMI) provides a reliable indicator for body fatness for most people and is used to screen for weight categories that may lead to health problems. It is also reported in some research studies as a tool for describing the characteristics of the sample being tested. A person whose BMI is below 18.5 is considered underweight. A BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 is normal. A BMI between 25.0 and 29.9 is overweight, and 30.0 and above is obese. In general, is BMI a valid biomechanical measure for college students? Explain your answer.
  2. How well does your data match up with the diagram?
  3. How well does the group data match up with the diagram?
  4. The anthropometric data commonly used to create biomechanical models in modern laboratories typically come from studies performed in the 1800s and 1900s. In general, how have humans in the United States changed over the past 100 to 150 years? Why would any change have occurred?
  5. Is it acceptable for biomechanics researchers to use these old anthropometric measures? Explain your answer, including a discussion of the limitations of the data discussed in class along with your comparisons of your individual and group data to the previously published values.
More Excerpts From Applied Biomechanics Lab Manual With HKPropel Online Video Loose Leaf Edition