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Vol 66, No 1 (2007)
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Published online: 2006-12-14
Submitted: 2012-02-06
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Secular changes in the physical development of students of the Medical University of Łódź

A. Sitek, A. Szkudlarek, B. Antoszewski
Folia Morphol 2007;66(1):62-68.

open access

Vol 66, No 1 (2007)
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Published online: 2006-12-14
Submitted: 2012-02-06

Abstract

This study analyses, using selected somatometric features, secular trend changes which have occurred over a quarter of a century in female and male students of the Medical University of Łódź. The study is based on the results of an anthropometric survey carried out among first-year students who commenced their studies in the academic years 1978/79 (240 females and 193 males), 1982/83 (347 females and 188 males), 1988/89 (178 females and 165 males) and 2003/04 (188 females and 77 males). The following features were examined in all participants in the survey: body height (B-v), the height of the lower body segment measured from a floor base to the crista iliaca at the point on the mid-axillary line (B-ic), shoulder width (a-a), intertrochanteric distance (tro-tro) and resting chest circumference. To compare average values Student`s t-test was used with assumptions of equal and unequal variances. To gauge the magnitude of changes in specific features in the course of a quarter of a century a percentage difference in results was calculated for the years 2003/2004 and 1978/1979. The basis for the calculations was the initial value of a feature at the beginning of the period analysed.
It was determined that in the 25-year period analysed (1978-2003) the young people commencing studies at the Medical University of Łódź exhibited an acceleration in the height of the lower body segment (B-ic) and of the intertrochanteric distance (tro-tro) and a deceleration in resting chest circumference. Additionally, an increase in shoulder width has been noted in female students; no significant intergenerational changes were noted in body height, although the last 15 years display certain symptoms of deceleration; there is an emerging tendency towards a blurring of the differences in body proportions between the sexes in the environment of the young people studying at the Medical University of Łódź.

Abstract

This study analyses, using selected somatometric features, secular trend changes which have occurred over a quarter of a century in female and male students of the Medical University of Łódź. The study is based on the results of an anthropometric survey carried out among first-year students who commenced their studies in the academic years 1978/79 (240 females and 193 males), 1982/83 (347 females and 188 males), 1988/89 (178 females and 165 males) and 2003/04 (188 females and 77 males). The following features were examined in all participants in the survey: body height (B-v), the height of the lower body segment measured from a floor base to the crista iliaca at the point on the mid-axillary line (B-ic), shoulder width (a-a), intertrochanteric distance (tro-tro) and resting chest circumference. To compare average values Student`s t-test was used with assumptions of equal and unequal variances. To gauge the magnitude of changes in specific features in the course of a quarter of a century a percentage difference in results was calculated for the years 2003/2004 and 1978/1979. The basis for the calculations was the initial value of a feature at the beginning of the period analysed.
It was determined that in the 25-year period analysed (1978-2003) the young people commencing studies at the Medical University of Łódź exhibited an acceleration in the height of the lower body segment (B-ic) and of the intertrochanteric distance (tro-tro) and a deceleration in resting chest circumference. Additionally, an increase in shoulder width has been noted in female students; no significant intergenerational changes were noted in body height, although the last 15 years display certain symptoms of deceleration; there is an emerging tendency towards a blurring of the differences in body proportions between the sexes in the environment of the young people studying at the Medical University of Łódź.
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Keywords

secular trend; somatic development; somatometry

About this article
Title

Secular changes in the physical development of students of the Medical University of Łódź

Journal

Folia Morphologica

Issue

Vol 66, No 1 (2007)

Pages

62-68

Published online

2006-12-14

Bibliographic record

Folia Morphol 2007;66(1):62-68.

Keywords

secular trend
somatic development
somatometry

Authors

A. Sitek
A. Szkudlarek
B. Antoszewski

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