Where can I obtain anthropometric data?

Anthropometric data are published primarily in 

national and international standards


Scientific journals

The anthropometric data found in collections of data often differ. Differences between data are not necessarily contradictory, since the dimensions are influenced by the composition of a random sample. Should several collections of anthropometric data be available, preference should be given to the most recent collection. See: Up-to-dateness of anthropometric data.

Übersicht über Datenquellen für Körpermaße
Type DIN/EN and ISO standards Manuals Scientific journals
  • Large random samples
  • Data are rarely up to date 
  • Complex collection of data (dimensions)
  • User-oriented/information on use
  • Percentile values are stated
  • Information on random samples differs
  • Data are rarely up to date 
  • Complex or selected collections of data (dimensions)
  • User-oriented/information on use
  • Percentile values are stated
  • Small random samples 
  • Data are up to date
  • Selected collections of data (dimensions)
  • Not user-oriented/no information on use
  • Statistically divergent data
  • CEN ISO/TR 7250-2:2013-08
  • DIN 33402-2:2005-12
  • DIN 33402-2 Ber 1:2007-05
  • EN 547-3:2009-01
  • EN ISO 14738:2009-07
  • Anthropologischer Atlas
  • Handbuch der Ergonomie
  • Kleine ergonomische Datensammlung
  • Anthropologischer Anzeiger
  • Annals of Human Biology
  • Ergonomics
  • Applied Ergonomics

In principle, any source of data may be used. It must be remembered however that anthropometric data differ according to the purpose of their compilation and the age of their publication.  

Errors in design and assessment are generally caused not by the quality of the data, but by incorrect application of them. This includes the use of data that are out of date, particularly where human body dimensions are undergoing significant change: (see Warning: do not simply combine percentile data; Influence of age). Some years ago, this particularly concerned body height and leg and arm length, owing to the secular increase in length dimensions. At the present time, the trend towards obesity is a reason for particular attention to be paid to whether the data are up to date (see Up-to-dateness of anthropometric data). This particularly concerns the circumferential and breadth dimensions (waist girth, body breadth sitting, etc.).

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