Anthropometric Sizing

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Anthropometry is the study of the shape and size of the human body. As roebuck defines it – “the science of measurement and the art of application that establishes the physical geometry, mass properties and strength capabilities of the human body.” The name derives from anthropos meaning human and metrikos meaning of or pertaining to measuring. According to Pheasant(1996) anthropometry’s historical antecedents date back to Renaissance. He cites works such as Albert Durer’s (1471-1525) Four books of Human Proportions, which depict the diversity of humans through illustrations and classic drawings of Leonardo Da Vinci. However the field is generally described as having originated from physical anthropology, a discipline that emerged during the 19th century and among other things focuses on physical differences between people of different ethnic groups. To perform such comparison, it was necessary to develop a set of tools – 1)Measurement techniques to obtain data from individuals,

2)Statistical methods for transforming data from individuals into summary data that capture the properties of groups. Today, anthropometry plays an important role in industrial design, clothing design, ergonomics and architecture where statistical data about the distribution of body dimensions in the population are used to optimize products. Changes in life styles, nutrition and ethnic composition of populations lead to changes in the distribution of body dimensions (e.g., the obesity epidemic), and require regular updating of anthropometric data collections. Bertillon, Galton, and criminology

The savant Alphonse Bertillon gave his name in 1883 to a system of identification depending on the unchanging character of certain measurements of parts of the human frame. He found by patient inquiry that several measures of physical features, along with dimensions of certain bones or bony structures in the body remain fairly constant throughout adult life. He concluded that when these measurements were made and recorded systematically every single individual would be found to be perfectly distinguishable from others. The system was soon adapted to police methods when crime fighters found value in being able to fix a person's identity. It prevented false impersonation and brought home, to any one charged with an offense, a person's responsibility for a wrongdoing. After its introduction in France in 1883 "Bertillonage," as it was called, became widely popular, and credited with producing highly gratifying results. Many countries followed suit in the adoption of the method, integrating it within their justice systems. However it was almost a decade before England followed suit when in 1894 a special committee was sent to Paris for an investigation of the methods used and results obtained with them. It reported back favorably, especially on the use of measurements for primary classification, but also recommended the adoption, in part, of the system of "finger prints" as suggested by Francis Galton, and in practice at that time in Bengal, India. There were eleven measurements:

Stretch: Length of body from left shoulder to right middle finger when arm is raised Bust: Length of torso from head to seat, taken when seated
Length of head: Crown to forehead
Width of head: Temple to temple
Length of right ear
Length of left foot
Length of left middle finger
Length of left cubit: Elbow to tip of middle finger
Width of cheeks

From this great mass of details, soon represented in Paris by the collection of some 100,000 cards, it was possible, proceeding by exhaustion, to sift and sort down the cards till a small bundle of half a dozen produced the combined facts of the measurements of the individual last sought. The whole of the information is easily contained in one cabinet of very ordinary dimensions, and most ingeniously contrived so as to make the most of the space and facilitate the search. The whole of the record is independent of...
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