The Physical Proportions Of The Typical Man 11

Figure D.

The undergoing of present hardship for the sake of future gain is one of the most encouraging features connected with athletic sports and games. That the participants may be in the best physical condition at the day of the contest, they are obliged to undergo a long and arduous course of training, denying themselves luxuries, foregoing pleasures, and holding themselves down to a rigid system of mechanical exercises for an ultimate object, - the winning of a foot-race, boat-race, or a ball-game. If one man in a hundred will practise self-denial, and undergo hardship, in order to win a prize in a fleeting pastime, is it not an insult to the remaining ninety-nine to assume that they have not sufficient morale to make a similar effort in preparing to win the higher prize of life?

After obtaining the measurements of a thousand individuals, ranging from sixteen to thirty years of age, I tabulated them according to age, and sought to obtain the average height, weight, chest-girth, etc., as indicated in the list previously described. The averages thus obtained have been used as a working basis up to the present time. Immediately after the examination of the individual, he was furnished with a book or card in which his measurements at the parts specified were compared with those of the average man of the same age. If a measurement fell below the average, the fact would be indicated by the minus sign following it; if the measurement exceeded that of the average, it would be shown by the plus sign.

The interest manifested in physical examinations by the public at large during the last few years, and the adoption of my methods and standards of measurement in several institutions of learning, have enabled me to collect sufficient data to form a more reliable basis for deductions concerning the human figure, male and female, and to offer a more attractive form of expressing these deductions.

Every one who has attempted to draw any conclusion from the measurements of the body must have realized the need of some guide that would show at a glance, not only the relative standing of one individual as compared with another, but also the relation of every part of the individual to every other part. Unless these facts are known, all estimates of the physical ability or capacity of a man are simply matters of opinion. One person may be above another in height, and below him in weight. The significance of the fact lies in the degree of the difference. Then, again, the same man may be above the normal in one measurement, and below the normal in another. The extent of the variation is the desirable thing to know. In one instance this variation might not exceed the physiological limits; in another instance it might result in a deformity. These differences are but vaguely suggested when expressed in figures; yet it is futile to tell a person that he is above or below the average without indicating the degree, or informing him of its significance.

The object of the chart (see Charts I., II., III.) is to meet this difficulty, and to furnish the youth of both sexes with a laudable incentive to systematic and judicious physical training, by showing them, at a glance, their relation in size, strength, symmetry, and development to the normal standard, as deduced from the measurements of ten thousand individuals, ranging from seventeen to thirty years of age.

The Physical Proportions Of The Typical Man 12

Figure E.

The reference tables, of which this chart is a reduced skeleton, are the result of seventeen years' observation. The deductions have been drawn from measurements taken largely from the student class of the community.

The tables for females have been made up from measurements taken by trained assistants at the principal female colleges.

The parts at which the observations were made are indicated by the list at the left side of the chart.

The perpendicular lines divide into classes all of the measurements for each part that were surpassed or unsurpassed by given percentages of the persons examined, as shown by the figures at the top of the chart. The upper number at the top of a perpendicular line shows the per cent that at each part surpassed the class indicated by that line. The lower number shows the per cent that at each part failed to surpass that class. The small per cent that exactly represented that class at any part - varying as it did with the per cent of that class at every other part, and with the per cent of every other class at every part - is not separately taken into account.

Chart II., plotted from figures C, D, and E.

Chart II., plotted from figures C, D, and E.

The reference tables from which this chart is made give all the figures representing the measurements of the fifty-one classes for either sex. These figures are placed where the perpendicular lines intersect the lines leading from the parts measured.

The perpendicular line in the centre of the chart is the normal or typical line; i. e., the line that was represented at each part by a larger per cent of the persons examined than was any other line at any other part.

The class marked "minimum" and the class marked "maximum" were each represented at every part by about one-twentieth of one per cent of all the persons examined.

After a few moments' study, it will readily be seen that the uses of the chart are numerous, showing the relation of the individual to the normal standard, the relation which every part of the individual bears to every other part, and suggesting many other comparisons of interest.