A persons height can vary from morning to night and if you didn’t already know this you may have just assumed that you measured your height incorrectly, which is not the case. You must be wondering that if the height of a person varies throughout the day then what is the best time to measure a person’s height right? Well we hope to answer that question of yours through this article.
The rate at which a person’s height grows is called height velocity. The fastest height velocity if found in males that are between the prime ages of 13 – 14. The maximum growth in height of a male in that period is 3 – 4 inches, which is a little more than one-fourth of an inch at best and hence you can imagine how slow our height velocity actually is.
The height of a person varies from day to night so finding the right time to measure ones height is essential and to find the right time to measure ones height we must first understand why ones height changes from morning to night. The human spinal cord is similar to the suspension of a car and hence can compress and expand. After a good night’s sleep the spinal cord is completely rested and is hence at its maximum length in the mornings. The spinal cord then absorbs vibrations throughout the day and is also pulled down by body weight and essentially gravity which results in compression of the spinal cord through the day. This compression of the spinal cord through the day results in decreasing height. So the maximum height is in the mornings directly out of bed known as the “morning height” and the minimum height is in the night just before going to bed, called the “night height.”
So to measure one’s height accurately one can add his or her morning height to the night height and divide it by two to find an average or mean height through the day. Another way to get an accurate measurement for your height is by waiting about seven hours after your have woken up to measure your height so that the number isn’t completely relaxed and extended as in the mornings and isn’t even compressed as in the night, thereby giving a accurate reading for your height. The graph below will make it easier to understand how most of the compression of the spinal cord happens essentially in the first-half of the day and hence a seven hour gap from the time you wake up is sufficient to give you an accurate reading for your height.
A few additional things one must remember to get an accurate measurement of his or her height are:
- Keep your legs parallel to one another.
- Your feet should not be parallel instead tilted slightly outward
- Do not push you head backward, instead use the muscles at the back of your neck and stretch upwards.
- Tilt your head slightly downward so your glance is downward and this helps because the back of your head is generally a few millimetres higher that your forehead and hence will add those few millimetres to your height.
- Many people tend to suck in their bellies and chest, instead breathing in air from your chest as well as from your lower stomach results in its expansion which in turn results in decompression of thoracic vertebrae adding another few millimetres.