URC

Does Arch Height Affect A Woman’s Actual Height?

Hena Thakur

Thomas Sprigg Wootton High School, Rockville, MD


Abstract

This study investigates the presence of a correlation between women’s medial arch heights and actual heights. The human body is known to possess several different types of symmetries and proportional correlations; however, no studies have been conducted to determine the possibility of a relation between women’s medial arch heights and actual heights. The existence of such a relation could prove to be a valuable tool for scientists, especially those involved in forensics. In this study, medial arch heights and actual heights of 126 women were taken and regression analyses were performed on the data to determine significance. The results indicate no significant correlation between the foot arch height and actual height of a woman.

Introduction

There are several factors that affect human height. These factors include: an individual’s exposure to diseases, the nutrition an individual receives, the amount of exercise an individual does, the biological genes an individual possesses, the environment an individual grows up in, and the amount of stress undergone by an individual. These factors affect the strength and health of an individual, thereby determining the height of that person (Hueso, 2007; Lai, 2006).

Amidst the different correlations found between the human body and human height, only one correlation has been found between an individual’s foot and actual height. The length of a person’s foot directly correlates with the person’s height. The length of a person’s foot correlates with the height of the individual is (Patel, Shah, and Patel, 2007).

The foot arch in a person’s foot consists of the following bones: the Calcameus, the Talus, the Navicular, the three Cuneiforms, and the first, second and third Metatarsals. These bones have been modified, through surgery, in the past to achieve a desired foot arch height (Fick, 2007).

A study on foot arch height revealed that a relationship exists between foot arch height and foot pressure. People with low arched feet have a higher foot pressure when walking barefoot than do people with high arched feet (Van Schie & Boulton, 2000). This is just one of several problems associated with foot arches. It has been found that people with different foot arch heights undergo different problems due to their arch height. Flat-footed people, who have essentially no arch height, are called overpronators. Overpronators, while running, walking, or jogging, roll their feet inward, have problems stabilizing their body, do not absorb shocks efficiently, and transmit excess force to inside structures of their legs. Highly-arched footed people are called underpronators. Underpronators, while running, walking or jogging, roll their feet outward, do not absorb shocks efficiently, and transmit excess force to outside structures of their legs. Overpronators, however, are better able to handle stress caused by exercise than are underpronators because overpronators’ feet are more flexible. People with normally arched feet are called normal pronators. Normal pronators, while running, walking or jogging, roll their feet inward at the right angle, can support body weight, and distribute the impact of movement evenly. Thus overpronators and underpronators have added stress on their feet and are more likely to suffer injuries (Pronation explained, 2004).

Based on these findings, different foot arch heights cause different stresses on a person. It has also been proven that the amount of stress an individual undergoes as a youngster affects his/her height. However, no study has been conducted to see whether an individual’s foot arch height affects that individual’s actual height. The relation between an individual’s foot arch height and actual height, if proven significant, could provide scientists another means by which to determine the measurements of an individual should the situation arise when not all the individual’s bones are available for evaluation.

Method

Women, aged 20-55 years old, were tested in this experiment. This age limit was set because after the age of 18, women stop growing taller. Also, after the age of 55, women begin to shrink in height (Hueso, 2007). Such changes would skew the data because having the maximum height of the subject is essential in determining whether a correlation exists. The data were collected from July 9 until August 19, 2008 at the Hare Rama Hare Krishna Temple, the Rockville Sikh Temple, and Westat, a research corporation. The women were asked to place their bare feet on a flat surface. A ruler was used to measure the height from the flat board surface to the highest peak in the arch on the inside of their feet. The actual heights of the women were taken by asking them to stand against the wall on a flat surface, holding a ruler on top of the women’s heads and measuring, with a measuring tape, from the bottom of the women’s feet to the bottom of the ruler. A scatter plot and the regression analyses were performed to determine the presence of a relationship between these variables.

Results

The mean, median, maximum and minimum of the independent variable, foot arch height, are respectively: 2.12 cm, 1.97 cm, 3.24 cm and .90 cm (See Table 1). The mean, median, maximum and minimum of the dependent variable, actual height, are respectively: 158.91 cm, 158.80 cm, 172.70 cm, and 134.60 cm. The scatter plot of actual height versus foot arch height shows no relationship between the two variables (See Figure 1). Regression analysis was used to determine whether a relationship existed between foot arch height and actual height. The linear and nonlinear forms of the independent and dependent variables were used in different models; however, the relationship between a person’s actual height and foot arch height was not significant in any of the models (See Table 2). For example, when regression analysis was used on the variables, foot arch height and actual height, a p-value of .590 was given. This p-value, as were the other p-values found in the other models, was greater than .05 and thus insignificant.

Table 1 . Summary of Dependent and Independent Variables (Sample size=126)

Variable

Mean

Median

Minimum

Maximum

Dependent

       

Actual Height (cms)

158.91

158.80

134.60

172.70

Independent

       

Arch Height (cms)

2.12

1.97

0.90

3.24

Arch Height Square (cms sq.)

4.78

3.88

0.81

10.50

Arch Height Cube (cms cube)

11.39

7.65

0.73

34.01

 See further information in Appendix A.

Table 2 . Linear Regression Results (Number of people=126)

 

Model (Women Height in cms.)

 

 

P-

 

P-

 

P-

 

P-

 

Coefficient

value

Coefficient

value

Coefficient

value

Coefficient

value

Arc height (cms)

0.461

0.590

-10.913

0.651

       

Arc height square (sq. cms.)

 

 

8.100

0.496

 

 

 

 

Arc height cube (cms. cube)

 

 

-1.571

0.397

 

 

 

 

Log (Arc height)

 

 

 

 

1.423

0.418

 

 

sqrt(Arc height)

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.683

0.499

Constant

157.930

0.000

161.245

0.000

157.885

0.000

156.477

0.000

 

Model (log[Women Height in cms.]) 

 

 

P-

 

P-

 

P-

 

P-

 

Coefficient

value

Coefficient

value

Coefficient

value

Coefficient

value

Arc height (cms)

0.003

0.575

-0.071

0.643

 

 

 

 

Arc height square (sq. cms.)

 

 

0.052

0.490

 

 

 

 

Arc height cube (cms. Cube)

 

 

-0.010

0.394

 

 

 

 

Log (Arc height)

 

 

 

 

0.009

0.408

 

 

sqrt(Arc height)

 

 

 

 

 

 

0.011

0.486

Constant

5.061

0.000

5.084

0.000

5.061

0.000

5.052

0.000


 
Discussion

The linear regression analyses showed no significant relationship between foot arch height and actual height in women. This means that the height of person’s foot arch does not significantly affect a person’s height. However, this study did not control for the other factors that affect height in humans. Further studies should control for these other factors to determine whether a relationship exists between foot arch height and actual height. For example, an experiment testing for this relationship should account for the following factors: a person’s level of nutrition intake during that person’s growth period and the amount of exercise done by a person during childhood. An experiment modeled as such would be better able to determine whether a relationship exists between a person’s foot arch height and actual height.

References

Fick, R. (2007). Arches of the Foot. In Human Anatomy. Retrieved June 18, 2008, from www.theodora.com/anatomy/arches_of_the_foot.html

Hueso, A. D. C. (2007, July 16). Study shows the factors which have most influenced human height throughout history . In Science News. Retrieved June 18, 2008, from http://prensa.ugr.es/prensa/research/verNota/prensa.php?nota=471

Lai, C.-Q. (2006, December 11). How much of human height is genetic and how much is due to nutrition? [Press release]. Retrieved June 17, 2008, from http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=how-much-of-human-height

Patel, S. M., Shaw, G. V., & Patel, S. V. (2007). Estimation of Height From Measurements of Foot Length in Gujarat Region. Journal of the Anatomical Society of India, 56(1), 25-27.

Pronation explained. (2004, August). Running shoes & gear: Running Shoe Basics: Orthotics & Pronation (Runner's world). Retrieved from
http://www.runnersworld.com/subtopic/0,7123,s6-240-319-327-0,00.html

Van Schie, C. H., & Boulton, A. J. (2000). The effect of arch height and body mass on plantar pressure. Wounds, 12, 88-95.


Appendix A - Data Table

Actual Height

(cm)

Arch Height

(cms)

Actual Height

(cm)

Arch Height

(cms)

Actual Height

(cm)

Arch Height

(cms)

Actual Height

(cm)

Arch Height

(cms)

134.6

1.890625

167.6

2.287500

154.9

1.970000

156.2

2.381250

154.9

1.890625

162.6

3.240000

167.6

1.890625

160.0

1.905000

158.8

1.970000

172.7

1.970000

162.6

1.970000

158.8

2.540000

163.8

1.652500

165.1

2.287500

152.4

3.240000

157.5

2.540000

153.7

0.938125

157.5

1.652500

154.9

1.970000

162.6

2.540000

157.5

1.811250

162.6

1.970000

160.0

1.890625

157.5

2.381250

158.8

1.890625

162.6

1.811250

154.3

1.890625

158.8

2.381250

152.4

2.843125

154.9

1.970000

148.6

1.811250

160.0

2.063750

167.6

1.970000

160.0

2.128750

157.5

1.414375

157.5

2.381250

165.1

2.128750

160.0

1.652500

160.0

1.652500

157.5

2.381250

144.8

1.731875

157.5

2.843125

157.5

1.811250

152.4

1.905000

167.6

1.652500

160.0

1.970000

167.6

2.128750

162.6

1.905000

160.0

1.652500

165.1

2.128750

154.9

1.652500

165.1

2.540000

165.1

1.493750

167.6

2.366875

160.0

1.493750

154.9

2.540000

162.6

1.970000

162.6

2.128750

156.2

1.890625

152.4

2.222500

162.6

1.573125

154.9

1.811250

157.5

1.890625

160.0

1.905000

162.6

2.366875

167.6

2.684375

152.4

1.731875

161.9

1.905000

165.1

2.366875

160.0

2.128750

157.5

3.160625

153.7

2.381250

156.2

2.843125

162.6

2.446250

157.5

1.731875

160.0

2.381250

 

 


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