Just The Facts

Denmark: A Head and Shoulders Above

How tall is the tallest national population in the world?


  • Denmark has the tallest average male height in the world today at 183.2 cm (72.1 inches).
  • The average height of Danish men increased by 13.7 cm (5.3 inches) from 1880 to 1980.

1. Denmark has the tallest average male height in the world today. In fact, they are even taller now than in the recent past.

2. The average height for a man born in Denmark in 1980 is 183.2 cm (72.1 inches).

3. One hundred years earlier, in 1880, the average height of a Danish man was 169.5 cm (66.7 inches).

4. That was 8.1% higher, for an increase of 13.7 cm (5.3 inches) in height in 100 years.

5. Danish men today are on average 4.2 cm (1.6 inches) taller than in the United States and 2.7 cm (1 inch) taller than in Germany.

6. Northern European men in general are tall today. The height of a man born in the Netherlands in 1980 is 182.7 cm (71.9 inches).

7. The height of a man born in Sweden in 1980 is 180.4 cm (71 inches). That is almost the same as Germany at 180.5 cm (71.1 inches).

8. Until about 200 years ago, the average human height worldwide has remained relatively unchanged for thousands of years, hovering around the 170 cm mark.

9. Today, the shortest population, for which data exist, is Vietnam. Men born there in 1980 average just 160 cm (63 inches).

Sources: The Globalist Research Center, University of Tuebingen, Oxford University

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