Relationship of body composition to somatotype in college men

T. G. Lohman, M. H. Slaughter, A. Selinger, R. A. Boileau

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


This study was designed to determine the relation of somatotype to body composition of college-aged men and to test the assumptions of the Heath and Carter approach to the estimation of second component as lean body mass relative to height. Lean body mass was estimated from whole-body 40K spectrometry and from body density. LBM/height accounted for less than one third of the variation in Health and Carter's second component. When lean body mass and height were used together in multiple regression analysis as separate predictors instead of a ratio, 66 per cent of the variation in the second component was accounted for. The muscle circumferences and height, but not skeletal widths, used in the Heath and Carter method were significant predictors in regression analysis, accounting for 84·5 per cent of the variance in LBM. The use of two skinfolds (upper arm and waist) and body weight represents the most accurate approach for predicting LBM with 96·0 per cent of the variance accounted for. While there was a significant relation between the Heath and Carter anthropometric approach to second component as lean body mass relative to height, a more valid approach to the prediction of second component from anthropometry is the use of skinfolds and body weight, rather than body circumferences and widths, to estimate LBM. A new, practical approach to the estimation of second component is proposed using height and estimated LBM in a regression equation derived on the sample investigated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)147-157
Number of pages11
JournalAnnals of Human Biology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1978

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Physiology
  • Aging
  • Genetics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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