2017 saw the world's largest and most comprehensive series measurement of people in North America. It should be completed by 2019. The first results are already in sight.

For many months a bus has been touring North America in search of data. Human Solutions in cooperation with Vestechpro measures people and wants to determine current body dimensions as a basis for product development in the fashion and automotive industries. In both branches of industry, up-to-date knowledge of the actual body shapes of people is indispensable. The project is financed by fashion companies such as Hugo Boss, Gap, VF, Adidas, Walmart, etc. and almost all major car brands.

A bus has been touring North America in search of data.
Photo: SizeNorthAmerica
A bus has been touring North America in search of data.

"The body measurements and proportions of the North American population have changed noticeably in recent decades, as has the demographic structure of the USA and Canada," says Tim Günzel, project manager of SizeNorthAmerica. He wants to measure 18,000 test persons from nine age groups and six regions in the USA and Canada. It started in the USA, where more than 7,500 data records had been collected by July 2018–either in the mobile bus or in three permanently installed scanning locations. The special: Each person is scanned in four positions, standing three times and sitting once. In addition to updating the measurement tables for adults, the focus is on the measurement of children and adolescents: There has never been a special series measurement for the age group between 6 and 17 years in the USA before–the children's size tables currently used refer to data from the years 1930 and 1970.

"It is already clear," says Günzel, "that the range of sizes is much more varied than previously assumed.” This means that the body shape extremes have developed further. The various ethnic groups in the USA are making a significant contribution to this development. For example, the chest circumference of adult men varies from 70 centimeters to 160 centimeters. On average, it is 109 centimeters. Women over 18 years of age have had their breast circumferences enlarged by more than five centimeters and their waist by more than nine centimeters. The weight increased by 6.6 kilograms on average.

The measurements in the USA are to be completed this year, access to the data is to be possible at the beginning of 2019, from then on they will be integrated in the iSize web portal. 2019 will also see the start of measurement in Canada.

This is not the first series measurement for the Human Solutions Group. The anthropometry specialists from Kaiserslautern, Germany have already carried out such measurements worldwide, e.g. in Germany, Italy, France, Sweden, China and Spain.

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