A while back ago I had written an article asking the question “How many 8 feet tall people are in the world?” Turns out the answer was 3 currently at this time who are alive. There is another person who could be the 4th but there is sort of a controversy over that issue so me and few other height enthusiasts decided to leave it as it is for now.
I guess it was only appropriate and a matter of time before I wrote and tried to answer this question. So….
“How many 7 feet tall people are in the world?”
Of all the people in the world, I personally really believe that I am one of less than 100 people in the world who know as much about height and height growth who could possibly answer this question
The only other person who can possibly answer this question is someone who does actually has studied Auxology which is the official scientific name for the study of human growth.
Here is my answer
I am going to use a combination of mathematics, statistical reasoning, real life situations and personal observations, hours and years poring over height related literature, and some “hand waving guesstimation”.
This is what I do know. I have lived in a variety of countries in my life with some of the biggest variability in the size of the resident’s bodies. I have lived in super crowded cities over 20 million people and have lived alone close to the woods in the middle of nowhere.
In each of our brain, there is a part in the back of our brain called the R.A.S. , the reticular activating system which is always subconsciously looking for what we choose to consciously seek after. Some people prefer to focus on people’s eyes so when they walk by a lot of people, they only notice and can describe people’s eyes from memory. Other people look at the ground and are fixated on a passerby’s shoes. That is what they choose to focus on.
We get what we choose to focus on. Well, I focus on height. When I walk past a huge group of people, I look for people who are either abnormally tall or abnormally short. They are the people I notice the most. Of course, they are also the most easily noticeable.
I used to live in Seattle, WA. In the last census taken in 2011, it was reported that Washington State has about 6.8 Million people. Hell, most people don’t even answer the census that comes in their mail anymore (If you do, you are better than me since I always forget). So we could say that the real population of the state of Washington could be maybe 10-20% bigger than the census reports. Instead, we should be collecting the numbers by the number of social security numbers given out and the number of people who arrive in the US with a passport and never had a ticket to leave the country.
Next, we have to take into account for people who are in the state illegally. If we assume the influx of illegal immigrants, we can increase that to say another 3% , assuming that 1 out of 30 people in the state is there illegally. However, we have to remember that probably the majority of the illegal immigrant are from down South, from Mexico or other Central America countries. Sure, there might still be human trafficking through say a ship or cargo loader from the sea. but those numbers should be a lot smaller than the people who just walk past the border. I would assume that not many Canadians try to flee down south through the border into the US.
What I am trying to do with the first part of my arguement is get the most accurate guess of the real population of the state of Washington as possible. So my guess is that instead of the 6.8 million reported by the census, the number is probably more like 8 Million, which is around a 15-18% increase.
From my daily walking and people watching this is what I have figured out. When I was living in the USA, in Seattle which has a population of only 500,000 I would see a 7 footer or someone very close to 7 foot maybe once every 1.5-2.5 months. I have never seen a 7 footer and saw them again. In the last year, I have seen maybe 4-5, one every 2.5-3.5 months but this year was very unique because the rate that I see them is a lot higher than previous years. Of course if I go on more large gathering places like a fair or concert, I would see a lot more. The city of Seattle has around 620,000 people.
I would say that I personally have seen maybe 10-15 people who are 7 foot tall or taller in my life. This is the part where I have to guess. Since I saw those 4-5 7 footers in Seattle in the last year, I would guess that there is maybe 1 7 footer for every 300,000 people in the state of Washington. that comes out to be about 27 7 footers in the state of WA. Now that does sound a little high but I would assume that WA is one of those states that height is higher than average of other states. If we than use that 1/300,000 people rule that comes out to be about 1030 7 footers in the USA.
Since there is about 7.1 billion people in the world, we could just divide 7.1 billion by 300,000 to get 23,600 7 footers.
Now that number is too high. I admit that my first calculation seems to be off, maybe even by 1 entire magnitude. The main reason is because most of the world is NOT tall, say really around 1.65 meters tall averaging out both men (5’8″) and women (5’3″). The average is smaller so the number the total world population has to divide by should be bigger.
We also have to take into consideration the fact that certain groups of people seem to be genetically bigger than others. In the last post, I had shown that there was 16 7 footers from Serbia at least from the Tier 1 level of professional basketball male players. Serbia has a population of around 7.2 million people . I would guess that the real number of 7 footers in Serbia is probably 40, or 1 7 footer for every 200,000 people.
If we compare that to say Vietnam, the ratios would be completely different. Vietnam has a population of almost 90 million. Guys who are 1.8 meters and girls who are 1.7 meters tall are considered tall there. For a native Vietnamese to get to be 1.9 meters is incredible, but our standard and desire is to move that cut off point by 2 more decimeters, which could be 3-4 more standard deviations away from the already deviated average. to more than 2.1 meters. 7 feet is 2.13 meters.
I would guess that in the country, there is probably 5-6 people over 7 feet. So 1 7 footer out of every 15-20 million people, taking into account and including people who might be suffering from gigantism and acrogemaly. This is all assuming that there is are probably a few 7 footers hidden from public or the media for fear of publicly exposed. People do treat people of extraordinary height in a way that make them feel like a sideshow or displayed animal sometimes.
This is the best number I could come up with for the number of 7 footers in the world. Multiply the the total world population by a number that is about 30% larger by 1 less mangitude in value compared to the ratio value used in the US calculation which is 1/2,300,000 to give around 3090 7 footers in the world.
so V2= (V1/10)*(1.30)
So the final calculated answering using pure reasoning is that there is about 2800 7 footers in the world currently, including for unknown ones, giants who have avoided the media out of privacy and fear reasons, and those that might be inflicted with medical conditions causing their large size.