You can be asked to measure your height for a variety of reasons, or you might simply be curious about what your height is. But not everyone has a ruler, yardstick, or tape measure handy.
There are, however, a few ways you can easily measure or estimate your height without these tools.
Compare to Other People
One of the easiest ways to estimate your height is to compare it to other people. If you know how tall someone is, you can usually judge how much taller or shorter you are than that person.
You can also guess your height by using the average height of most people.
For example, women around the world have an average height of 5 feet 4 inches, while men average about 5 feet 9 inches. If you’re a woman and you’re generally taller than most other women, you’re probably over 5 feet 4 inches.
You may also need to factor ethnicity, your health, and how you were raised into the equation. Asian people, for example, tend to be shorter than people of European descent, while Scandinavian people tend to be taller than Europeans.
Although this won’t give you an exact measurement, it can help you guess your height or the heights of people around you.
Use an Object to Estimate
If you want a more accurate measurement, you can use an object that you know the length of to measure yourself.
First, you’ll want to have an accurate height to measure, and the best way to do this is to measure yourself against a wall.
Stand against a wall with your heels, back, and head against the wall surface.
Try to make your back as straight as possible. Don’t wear any shoes or socks, and make sure that your hair is flat or can be pressed flat. Take a flat object, such as a book, and slide it along the top of your head, creating a right angle.
Use a pencil to mark where the bottom edge of the book hits the wall. If you don’t want to mark the wall, you can tape up a piece of paper beforehand. Just make sure the paper doesn’t move while you’re measuring.
You now have your height to measure, and you can use a number of different objects to measure that height.
A United States dollar bill, for example, is about 2.6 inches tall and just over 6 inches wide. If you turn the bill and use the 6-inch side to measure, you can simply flip the bill end over end.
Add together how many times the bill went up the wall until it hits your height, and multiply by six, for the length of the bill. Then, divide by 12, and you’ll have a rough measurement of how tall you are.
You can also use a piece of copy paper to do this. In the United States, copy paper is 11 inches tall. This is only 1 inch short of a foot, so paper makes an excellent measuring tool.
You can even divide the paper into eleven equal sections to get a more accurate measurement.
Use Your Hand Measurement
If you’re in a real pinch and need to measure yourself or someone else, you can use the size of your palm. Most adults’ palms are 4 inches across, on average.
Therefore, you can quickly use your hand to measure yourself or someone else. Simply see how many hands tall someone is, multiply by four, and then divide by 12. You can also use your thumb, although this might take more time.
Most adults’ thumbs are about 1 inch long.
You can also use your shoe size to measure. If you know what your shoe size is, simply look up a size chart, which can tell you how many inches long a particular size is.
You can then use one of your shoes, or you can measure out your foot and create a ruler, to measure your height.
Compare to Larger Objects
You can also compare yourself to larger or taller objects to get an estimate of your height. For example, most countertops are 3 feet tall.
This can help you get a good estimate of how much taller than the countertop you are and can help you estimate your overall height.
Taller objects work even better for comparing heights. An average doorframe is 80 inches, which is just over 6 and a half feet tall.
You can simply stand in a doorframe to estimate your height with relative accuracy. For a more accurate measurement, you can divide the doorframe into sections, marking out each measurement.
If you can estimate the middle of the doorframe, you know that both the top and bottom sections are 40 inches. You can then divide those sections into 20-inch sections, and you can divide those sections into 10-inch sections.
If your height falls within one of these sections, you can continue dividing the sections in half to get a measurement that’s accurate almost to the inch.