How to tell if I have a long or short torso

Written by latoya mcgill | 13/05/2017
How to tell if I have a long or short torso
Backpacks come in various sizes to aid people with longer or shorter torsos and prevent back pain. (Hemera Technologies/ Images)

Your torso is the length between the base of your neck and the top of your hip bone. This length is typically proportional with your height. Your torso length would be considered longer or shorter than average based on how your measurements match up against the average length of torsos for your height range. Knowing whether or not your torso is considered short or long can help when purchasing back support or a backpack.

Locate the bone at the base of your neck. This will be at the point where the slope of your shoulders meet your neck. Tilt your head forward to help you identify it easily.

Ask you friend to place the end of the measuring tape at the point you located in step 1. Have them measure down the middle of your back, along your spine.

Locate the base of your back. To find this location put your hands on your hips so that your thumbs are on your back.

Ask your friend to measure from the base of your neck to the point you located in step 3 and have them write down the length.

Compare the number your friend wrote down to these averages: male height: 1.7 to 1.8 m (5 foot 7 to 5 foot 11), torso length 43 to 48 cm (17 to 19 inches) female height: 1.57 to 1.68 m (5 foot 2 to 5 foot 6) torso length measurement of 38 to 43 cm (15 to 17 inches)

If your height falls above or below these averages compare your torso measurements to this standard, with extra small and small being a short torso, medium being average, and large being long torso:

Extra Small: torsos up to 39.4 cm (15 1/2 inches)

Small: torsos 40.7 to 44.5 cm (16 to 17 1/2 inches)

Medium/Regular: torsos 45.7 to 49.5 cm (18 to 19 1/2 inches)

Large/Tall: torsos 51 cm (20 inches) and up

Things you need

  • Measuring tape
  • A friend

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