You probably have an idea of what your body measurements are but to accurately tell your measurements you need precise figures.
If you are tracking the progress of your weight loss/gain, then the scale might mislead you or show no change.
The best way to tell if you are truly losing or gaining weight is by measuring individual body parts using a tape measure. But how do you do this correctly?
In this guide, we show you how to measure your body accurately.
How To Measure Waist
To measure the waist, you first need to find it. Your natural waistline is the smallest section of your torso. It is the soft fleshy part found between the lowest rib and the upper hip bone.Normally it will lie at or slightly above the belly button.
Now that you know where your waist is, stand straight and wrap a tape measure around it. Start by putting the edge of the tape measure at your belly button then circle it to the back, then the front.
Ensure the tape measure remains straight all-around your waist and parallel to the floor.
Do not bend or slouch. Make sure you are relaxed and breathing normally and don’t suck in your stomach.
Let the tape measure fit snugly around your waist but not too tight that it digs into your flesh.
To read the tape measure, mark the number where the one end of the tape meets the other side of the tape. Exhale to get the most accurate results.
How To Measure Chest
The chest is found in the upper region of the torso.
To get accurate measurements of the chest area, stand straight and in a relaxed posture.
Take the tape measure and place one of its ends at the fullest part of your breasts.
Then proceed to wrap the tape around the chest from the front to the back and then front again. Just as in measuring the waist, ensure the tape measure is straight.
You want it to circle the widest part of your bust without exhaling or sticking out the chest. The widest part of the breasts is at the nipple line.
The number that appears where the edge of the tape measure meets the other side is your chest size.
How To Measure Thighs
To measure thighs accurately, find the thickest part of your thighs. This is usually the area beneath your buttocks or halfway above the knee. While standing wrap a tape measure around your thigh.
Place one end of the tape measure at the front and circle it back then front again. Where the tape measure pointer meets the other side is your thigh measurement.
If you need to measure the length of your thigh, stand upright (you need someone else to do this for you) then place the end of the tape measure at the back of your knee and pull it straight up to the edge of your buttocks.
That will give you the length of your thigh.
How To Measure Hips
To measure your hips, stand with your feet put together. Then wrap the tape measure around the widest part of your hips. Make sure the tape measure fits snugly but not too tightly.
Where the edge of the tape measure meets itself is the measurement of your hips.For accurate results try to take this measurement in your underwear only.
How To Measure Abs:
To measure your Abs, stand straight without slouching. Put your feet together and ensure the torso is straight and relaxed. Don’t try to suck in your stomach.
Wrap a tape measure around the widest part of the torso, this should be at the belly button. Place one edge of the tape measure at the belly button, then circle it to the back and front. Ensure the tape measure is straight and parallel to the floor.
Then exhale and take the measurement.
How To Measure Calves
Our calves are the back part of our lower legs. They are located between the knee and ankle.
To measure your calf, seat down on a chair and place your feet flat on the ground. Your leg should be bent at a 90-degree angle at the knee.
Wrap a tape measure around the widest part of your calf. You might not know with certainty the widest part of the calf.
As such, take multiple measurements, start from the narrowest part of the leg, inching downwards. The widest measurement you get is your calf girth.
On the other hand, your calf length is measured by taking a tape measure and placing one end at the base of your foot and pulling it up to the base of your knee – – where it bends.
Take calf measurements on both legs, because leg’s do differ in size.
How To Measure Arms
There are several arm measurements.To measure your sleeve length. Stand straight with your arms falling at your sides. Ensure they are relaxed but bent forward.
Take a tape measure and place it at the center of your back then pull it along the shoulder, then down the upper arm to the elbow, and from the elbow to the wrist.
You need someone to help you with this measurement as it can be quite difficult for you.
To measure the width of your upper arm, wrap the tape measure at the widest part of your upper arm from front to back and then front again, where the edge of the tape measure meets itself is your upper arm girth.
Tips On Measuring Your Body Properly:
- Take measurements on bearskin or over light, tightly hugging clothes. Unless you are measuring the bust, in which case you can measure over a snugly fitting unpadded bra.
- Ensure you write down the measurements. Your memory can fail you at times which would result in you taking the measures all over again.
- How often should you measure yourself? Experts recommend 4 to 8 weeks so that you can actually see a change. The body is a complex machine, and it takes some time to notice changes.
- Use the right type of tape measure. A flexible tape measure such as soft cloth or inelastic plastic/rubber tape measures works well. Do not use a metal tape measure such as those used in construction.
- Cultivate a habit of measuring yourself under similar conditions and using similar tools. It’s best to take your measurements in the morning before eating anything. Or on Friday, if you usually break routine on weekends. For consistency purposes, mark landmarks that you will continuously use as measurement spots to track progress.
- Stand straight with the feet together, don’t slouch and breathe normally. Note when to take a measurement after exhaling and when to take a measurement while inhaling.
- Make sure that the tape measure is always straight and not at an angle. Also, ensure that it’s snug enough but not digging into the flesh. For most circumference measurements, the tape should be parallel to the floor and in a horizontal position. For length measurements, the tape can be parallel or perpendicular to the ground.
- Stand in front of a mirror to ensure you put the tape on correctly or get someone to help you measure the hard to reach places.
Understand What Your Body Type Means:
Sometimes you may get measurements that are slightly off but don’t worry. The difference is as a result of various body types.
For example, an apple-shaped body has a larger shoulder and bust measurement. To get a better understanding of what your body type is, here is a brief definition of the five different body shapes.
- Hourglass:An hourglass body shape has a bust that is roughly the same size as the hip area with a very small waist.
Your shoulders are a bit rounded and aligned with the hips. Your bottom is also well rounded and the waist nicely defined.
Hourglass body shapes are a picture of harmony. The front, as well as the side profiles, look great.
With this body type, you’re likely to get weight distributed proportionately between your tummy, thighs, and shoulder areas.
- Pear: The pear shape is also known as the triangle shape. It is characterized by wide curvy hips, thick thighs, and full buttocks.
This makes one appear bigger at the bottom and smaller at the top. Sort of like a triangle
Pear shapes have hips that are wider than the shoulders and the bust making them the widest area of the body. If you fall in this group, you will most probably have slim arms and a small bust which gives your waist a cinched appearance.
People with this type of body shape tend to gain weight in the thigh and tummy area.
- Apple: The apple shape is also known as the inverted triangle shape. Women in this category tend to have a wide torso, broad shoulders, and a full bust.
Their top is usually wider than the hips making them appear top-heavy. Hence the reference inverted triangle.
Apple shapes have slim arms and legs with a slightly flat bottom. They are likely susceptible to gaining weight in the tummy and waist area.
- Rectangle: Rectangular body shapes have straight hips and a straight body line. Their shoulders and hips are about the same width.
This body type lacks curves. It is characterized by broad shoulders, lean arms, and legs, a flat behind with a small burst. This frame gives the body its straight appearance and has minimal waist definition.
A big plus for this shape is that weight is distributed equally and not in a particular part of the body.
- Round: Round shoulders, undefined waistline, small hips, slim legs, and arms, are some of the features that characterize this body shape.
Round shapes are more like apple shapes. Women with this body type, carry a lot of their weight in the midsection. They have great legs and can work them to their advantage.
And that ladies is how to measure your body. The major areas that a woman commonly measures are the bust, waist, and hip areas.
With the tips given in this guide, you should be able to measure these or any other parts of your body accurately.
Remember, if your measurements differ, do not worry it’s probably due to your body shape.
There are five body shapes used to describe our beautiful and unique shapes as women. These are hourglass, pear, apple, rectangle, and round. Get acquainted with your body shape so that you understand its measurements better.
To sum up, keep helpful tips, such as a tracking sheet, to help you track your measurements over time. Map out landmarks that you will use to consistently measure your body parts.
This will help you get accurate results and be able to interpret what is happening to your body better.