The amount of weight a person needs to carry depends on several factors, such as the individual’s height and age. The average adult male weighs approximately 180 pounds (81 kilograms), according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
This figure includes both his body fat percentage and bone density. For example, if a man is 5 feet 9 inches tall (1.65 meters) and weighs 150 pounds (68 kg), he would fall into the “normal” range for his height and weight.
If a woman is 5 feet 4 inches tall (1.53 m) and weighs 130 pounds (58 kg), she falls within the “overweight” category for her height and weight. A child weighing 10 lbs (4.6 kg) would be considered underweight.
A person’s weight also affects how well they will perform certain physical activities, such as running, jumping rope, or playing sports. In general, heavier individuals tend to have better aerobic fitness levels and are able to run faster and longer distances than lighter ones. They may also be able to jump higher or throw farther with greater accuracy.
However, heavy people do need more calories than light-bodied people in order to maintain their current weights. A physically fit person who exercises on a regular basis and has a high body fat percentage is likely to be healthier than someone who is skinny and out of shape, even if the skinny person is heavier.
Body Mass Index (BMI) is a good indicator of a person’s weight in relation to their height. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) states that people with BMIs under 18.5 are considered underweight, while those with a BMI between 25 and 30 are considered overweight. A BMI over 30 is considered obese. For example, a person who is 5 feet 4 inches tall (1.6 m) would weigh 98 pounds (44 kg) to be within the normal weight range.
The same person would be considered underweight if he or she weighed less than 121 pounds (55 kg). If that same person weighed over 169 pounds (77 kg), they would be considered obese. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has more information about BMI.
Growth of schoolchildren with early, average and late ages of peak height velocity (G Lindgren – Annals of human biology, 1978 – Taylor & Francis)