Boys Height Growth Chart – average height of boys age 2 – 18 years
for children of "White" race/ethnicity*, ages 2 through 18.
Created by Steven B. Halls, MD, FRCPC and John Hanson, MSc.
The red lines show "percentiles". The thick red line in the middle is the 50th percentile, which indicates that 50% of the population of Boys has Height (or stature) taller than the line, and 50% are shorter. Similarly, the lowest red line, the 5th percentile line, indicates the Height where only 5% of the population of Boys is shorter.
Charts for adults male average height for men and average weight for men are available here. These are also interesting, because they not only show the average height, they also show that adults have a considerably higher prevalence of obesity than children.
The data source for this chart is the NHANES III survey, conducted in America during 1988 to 1994. The CDC used this dataset, as well as datasets from several older surveys, to construct the CDC standard pediatric growth charts.
I made these charts myself, back in around 1999 or year 2000. This was before the CDC did a major update to their charts. So the situation was that doctors were using much older charts from the 1970s, and I became aware that the NHANES study had excellent newer data. I wanted to make better charts with new data, so I asked my statistician friend, John Hansen, to help me. Together, we made these charts ourselves and put them on the internet.
Then, within a year, the CDC published new growth charts in year 2000, to great fanfare. So my charts had become somewhat obsolete almost immediately, or so I thought at first. But I gradually realized something about the CDC growth charts. I believe the CDC massaged the data mix so that they reflect someones idealized dream that the population should be like the 1970s, from before the age of television and video games.
The height charts don’t have much to massage. They are very straightforward data. Although it is true that the North American population is gradually becoming taller, that is a very slow process, and it is hard to detect that change on children’s growth charts. But weight charts are a problem. Our population of children is growing fatter.
I left these charts online, because they document what the NHANES III study showed, and, because its simply faster to find what you want here, than on the CDC website.
I just thought of another reason to keep my charts on the internet. I just compared these results, to what other websites are showing, and the other websites are showing lower values. For instance, for the 11 year old boy, the CDC chart says 56.6 inches and my chart shows 58 inches.
It is common knowledge that our population is slowly growing taller, and our children seem to be starting puberty earlier, and having their growth spurts earlier. I believe my charts from data around 1990, captured some of this. If totally recent data were available on charts, I think the values would be even taller.