How to take body measurements?

Body measurements guide diets and workouts. They also serve as a pattern for making suits. We will explain how to correctly measure your body.

Last update: 05 September, 2021

Do you know your body measurements? The dimensions of the body are important to make a suit, keep track of a physical training or a diet.

The measurement works as a guide and it is accurate as long as you take the data correctly. You need a tape measure and where to record the result. The methods vary according to the part of the body.


This sizing is taken at the narrowest point of the waist, that is, between the base of the rib cage and the upper part of the hips. The person stands upright, with the skin uncovered to surround it with the meter. Without pressing, you bring the ends of the tape measure until they meet at navel level.

Union is the measure. To find out if it is correct, repeat the process and check that both times match.

High waist

You measure from the waist line to the floor. The person has to be without shoes. If you want to make a long garment, then you measure using the footwear with which you will complement the look.


The hip is below the waist; It is the part that stands out the most from the torso. This is one of the body measurements that is taken in different ways.

There are those who measure just the lower part of the waist and those who consider the point above the maximum width of the side, including the buttocks. The tape is held on one side of the hip and the other end wraps around the area until the ends meet.

Hip height

It is the measure that starts at the waist and ends at the side fragment that sticks out from the hip.


In the measurement of the abdomen, the tape between hip and waist contours.

Measurement of the abdomen, waist and hips is useful for monitoring exercise routines and diets.


To calculate the width of the arms, tape wraps around the center of the biceps. The length is obtained by passing the meter over the shoulder and down to the tip of the middle finger of the hand.

The amplitude of both limbs is calculated standing, extending the arms in a cross and leaning against a wall. The tape stretches from the tip of the middle finger of the left hand to the tip of the same finger on the right.


The chest contour is obtained passing the tape measure over the bust and under the arms. Deducting the height is achieved with the meter at the base of the neck, descending vertically to the most prominent of the chest.

The high contour measurement is taken bordering the tape above the chest, between the armpits. For its part, the low contour is achieved by placing the meter under the bust.

An additional measurement in the case of women is that of breast circumference. It consists of stretching the meter in the cup of the bra.

Front waist

The front waist is achieved passing the measuring tape along the side of the neck birth and sliding to the waist, taking into account the most prominent area of ​​the chest.


You measure the length of both legs with the meter on one side, just above the waist and letting it fall to the ankle. The width of the thighs is measured by surrounding them with the tape at the thickest part, while the length of these is calculated from the knees to the beginning of the buttocks.

The body measurements of the thighs are frequent to follow the increase of muscle mass. However, beyond measuring yourself, you achieve a healthy weight with a balanced diet and the guidance of a nutritionist.

Keep in mind that, by itself, measuring with a tape measure does not require the evolution of a workout. One way to determine this is with the body mass index (BMI), using the calculators available Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Knee height

It is a vertical measurement from the waist to the knee.


To measure the neck contour, its lowest part is taken as a reference, where it is supposed to close the neck of the shirt.


Like other body measurements, the back size is calculated in width and length. For breadth, place the tape measure where the arms are born, go across the wide part of the back and go from shoulder to shoulder in a straight line. The length is obtained by positioning the meter at the base of the neck and sliding it to the waist.


There are at least two ways to measure shoulders. From the front, You extend the measuring tape from shoulder to shoulder. You can also calculate from the beginning of the neck to the bone of the shoulder.

Armhole length

The armhole is obtained from where the shoulder bone protrudes to the lower part of the arm; that curved cut corresponding to the armpit. Leave some slack, at least 3 centimeters below the concavity, for greater comfort when wearing the garment.

Side high

This height is taken from the base of the armpit to the beginning of the waist.

Tips to keep in mind to take body measurements

If you need the measurements to make clothes adapted to your body, it is important to apply certain recommendations:

  • Don't squeeze the tape measure: It is best not to do tight calculations, but do not leave the tape measure so loose either.
  • Relax the position: The person taking the measurements must be standing, in a relaxed position, facing forward.
  • Wear tight clothing: At the time of measuring the person, they should wear clothes that are close to the body or discover the area through which the measuring tape will pass.
  • Mark landmarks: Tying a cord at the waist is good for vertical measurements, because the calculations will be based on the line formed by the tape. Likewise, pins or fabric chalk are great for marking.
  • Includes clearances: To the sewing patterns it is essential to add extra centimeters when it comes to pieces such as jackets, coats, capes or something that is worn over the top. The size charts help to calculate.
Textile manufacturing requires that measurements be taken with precision to avoid errors.

What you should not ignore when taking action

Before you start measuring, write down which parts of the body you need to know the dimension of. Also, make sure the tape measure is flexible, because the metal ones limit the curvatures.

Remember to measure at least twice, so you confirm the result. And the most valuable suggestion is to take your time. Haste risks you miscalculation.