Does Your Height Correlate With The Size Of Your Head, Feet, Hands And Waist?

You can call it the amazing beauty and intelligence of nature that our height tends to correlate with the size of our head, feet, hands, and waist.

The processes involved in the development of a human body allow for the proportional increase in the lengths of these body parts in relation to each other. It helps these part grow in certain fixed ratios with only minor variations.

The ratio of the height to the length of the head or the ratio of the height to the length of our hands and feet tends to vary within a narrow range for fully grown adults and even kids once they have crossed a certain age.

Read on to learn more about how your height correlates with the size of your head, feet, hands, and waist.

The proportional growth of body parts

The proportional growth of different parts of the body can be assessed only when we measure and compare them closely across different age groups and genders.

Several research studies have revealed that our bodies have striking similarities that can be expressed in mathematical concepts as ratios. Recording and comparing the lengths and sizes of different body parts by researchers have helped us discover how a human body measures up!

Let us move further to check how your head, hands, feet, and waist correlate with your height and the different proportions in which these body parts grow.

How does your height correlate to the size of your legs or feet?Influence decisions

The leg-to-height and feet-to-height ratios are perhaps the most important when we discuss how different body parts correlate to each other.

Our feet provide the base or support to our entire body while standing and running or performing physical activities. They also play a critical role in maintaining the correct posture and balance.

The muscles, ligaments, and tendons in the feet help us balance our entire body. Also, our toes help us keep balance when we move forward such as while walking or running.

Without strong feet that are proportional in size to your height, you would find yourself struggling to maintain balance as a result of which you might fall when you lean to one side.

Hence, the taller you are, the larger should be the base of your feet to be able to provide optimum support to the entire body. That is the reason why taller people have longer feet and need to wear a bigger shoe size. This also explains why our body grows to maintain a certain ratio of height to the length of feet. 

The height-to-foot ratio is usually about 6.6:1. This means we have about 6.6 inches of height for each 1 inch of the foot length. However, this ratio is only an estimation. It is not uncommon for people to have smaller or larger feet than what is calculated based on this ratio.

The leg-to-height ratio, on the other hand, is seen more as an indicator of the physical attractiveness of the person. There appears to be no specific definition of leg-height ratio though the length of your legs from the floor to the perineum is often considered a standard measure to determine it. [1] [2]

Also, the distance between the ankle bone and the outer hip bone can also be used to determine how the length of your legs correlates to your height. [3]

On this metric, the most attractive leg-to-height ratio for men is considered to be 1:2.2. [4]

Excessive deviations from this ratio could be seen as an indication of health issues. [5]

How to calculate your height from your foot size?

It is easy to calculate the height-to-foot ratio when you know your foot size and height. However, it is more complicated to put this ratio to use to calculate an unknown height.

Here is an equation you can use to calculate the height based on the height-to-foot ratio. [6]

For right foot:

Height = 47.93 + 1.083 (Maximum foot length) + 0.788 (Shoe length x 1.083 (Shoe number)

For left foot: 

Height = 47.33 + 1.139 (Maximum foot length) + 0.593 (Shoe length) x 1.924 (Shoe number)

According to another method, the height can be calculated for males and females using different formulae as given below:

For females:

Height = Foot length x 3.43 + 75.41

For males:

Height = Foot length x 3.64 + 75.45

These formulae are formed based on the findings of a study, which revealed that the ratios between the height and the foot length vary in men and women.

It could be tempting to measure the dimensions of your body to assess if you are “normal”. However, there is really no need to stress yourself for having a slightly higher or lower height-to-foot ratio.

The applicability of this ratio in terms of the insights it provides into your health is limited. If your body and feet are healthy and you don’t experience any symptoms due to imbalance or lack of support, it doesn’t matter what your height-to-foot ratio is.

Hence, it is important to wear shoes that fit your feet and provide proper arch support, instead of using shoes calculated based merely on your height-to-foot ratio.

Staying physically active would keep the tissues in your feet strong and help you maintain optimum body weight. Following a balanced diet can also be good for your foot health. [7]

How does your height correlate to the size of your head?

The size of your head correlates to your height both in terms of its circumference and length.  On average, the height of a person is seven-and-a-half times more than the length of the head.

The findings of the research study have revealed there is also a significant correlation between the height and head circumference of a person. [8]

The majority of people have a head circumference-to-height ratio of about 1:3. This means your height will be about three times the circumference of your head at the level of its maximum girth.

It should be noted that the age-related growth in the size of the head tends to be slower than that of the height in babies and adolescents.

At birth, the head circumference is about 13 to 14 inches. It increases by nearly 17% during the initial 3 months after birth, and by 25% at the age of 6 months. It increases by approximately 1 inch in the 2nd year.

Later, during the 3rd year through the 5th year, the head circumference increases by approximately half an inch per year. [9]

This increase in head circumference may not be proportional to the increase in the height of the child. Hence, the 1:3 ratio of head circumference to height is considered applicable only to adult women and men who have stopped growing in height.

Excessive deviations from this ratio could be an indication of underlying health issues. For example; one research study has shown that the increased head circumference could be a sign of a genetic disorder called NBCCS (nevoid basal cell carcinoma syndrome). [10]

How does your height correlate to the size of your hands?

The ratio between the height and the size of the hands is a bit tricky to evaluate as significant differences may exist in the breadths and lengths of the right and left hands of a person. [11]

One research study that investigated the hand length-to-height ratio of a large group of participants, both men and women, has found that the hand length can be used to predict height as well as the body mass index (BMI). [12]

This study has provided a formula for predicting the height of a person based on the length of the hand, as explained beneath:

Predicted height (in cm) = 80.400 + 5.122 × hand length (in cm) – 0.195 × age (in years) + 6.383 × gender (gender: men 1, women 0)

Another simpler way to calculate your height is to divide the length of your hand by 0.11 for men and 0.10 for women.

This will give your height in inches.

The length of your hand to be used in this formula is to be measured from the tip of the middle finger to the wrist and expressed in inches.

Another research study has revealed that you can calculate your height by simply multiplying the length of your hand by 9.08. 

These studies have shown that definite proportions exist between the height and the length of the forearm or the hand in individuals of all ages. [13]

How does your height correlate to the size of your waist?

According to a research study, the average waist-to-height ratio is 0.424 for women and 0.428 for men.

Some studies have shown that the ratio is between 0.46 and 0.53 and between 0.45 and 0.49 in healthy men and women, respectively.

The waist-to-height ratio of more than 0.63 is considered a sign of obesity. [14] [15]

Interesting facts about how different body parts correlate with each other

  • The ratio of the width of the hip to shoulder varies by gender. On average, the hip width-to-shoulder ratio is 1:1 for women and 1:1.8 for men. [16] [17]
  • The ratio of the length covered by your stretched thumb and little finger is in a ratio of 1:1 to the length of your arm between your elbow and wrist.
  • The length of your femur (thigh bone) is approximately one-fourth of your height. This means the femur-to-height radio is 1:4.
  • The length of the legs measured from the floor to the perineum is typically 3 1/2 to 4 times longer than the head. 
  • Our arms are about three times longer than the length of the head.
  • Our hands (palms) are as long as our face. [18]

What are the applications of these ratios of body parts?

Health-related ratios such as weight-to-height, waist-to-hip, foot-to-height, and hand-to-height could be helpful in predicting the risk of certain disorders.

For example; a higher weight-to-height ratio indicates obesity, which, in turn, could be associated with an increased risk of diabetes and hypertension.

The increased height-to-foot ratio may indicate a risk of imbalances while walking as it shifts the body’s centre of gravity a little farther from the earth’s surface. Moreover, the foot size in children may also be used to predict their growth spurts at puberty.

These ratios are also applicable in forensic science where they can be used – somewhat morbidly – to estimate the height from a hand or foot when the rest of the body is not available.

The ratios of the sizes of different body parts make it interesting to understand the human body while also providing useful insights into the future health risks of a person.


Our bodies are indeed amazing!

The growth and development of our body are full of surprising facts and mysteries some of which we just discussed.

The interesting facts about how our height correlates with the size of our head, waist, hands, and feet are nothing but a reflection of nature’s magic!