Moscow University

Secular trend of somatic dimensions of children of first and second childhood (based on data from Russia and former USSR)

Fedotova T.K. , Gorbacheva A.K.

Lomonosov Moscow State University, Anuchin Institute and Museum of Anthropology, Mokhovaya st., 11, Moscow, 125009, Russia

Fedotova Tatiana K, PhD., DSc.; ORCID ID: 0000-0001-7750-7924;; Gorbacheva Anna K., PhD.; ORCID ID: 0000-0001-5201-7128;


Long term dynamics of height, weight and chest girth of children aged 4, 6 and 9 years is discussed in the article in connection with biological peculiarities of periods of the first and second childhood. Material and methods. Meta-analysis is based on literary data, the main source is collections of data on the physical development of children and adolescents of Russia and former USSR regularly published by Science Center of Child Health of Russian Academy of Medical Science, collected according to the common algorithm and thus comparable. The additional source of information is several dissertations and regional growth standards. The analysis includes data on 4-year-old children (314 samples of 1920-2000s with 10 years interval), 6-year-old children (312 urban samples of 1920-2000s with 10 years intervals); 9-year-old children (418 urban samples of 1880-2000s with 10 years interval). The quantity of each sex/age group is about 100 children. To estimate the direction and level of associations of the time factor and somatic traits the scattering diagrams were used - the graphic variant of classic correlation analysis for two variables. Results. The contribution of temporal factor to the secular dynamics of height increases through the age interval 4-9 years from the level r=0,4 for 4-year-old children to the level over r=0,6 for 9-year-olds. Secular changes of weight through the considered interval are less intensive – from the level 0,3 for 4-year-olds to the level of about 0,5 for 9-year-old children. The contribution of the temporal factor to the dynamics of chest girth is even more modest as compared to weight and significantly less than for height, not significant as a whole for 4 and 6-year-old children and increases by 9 years to the level of about 0,5. The average rates of secular gains per 10-year interval increase with age and are about 1 cm for height, 0,45-0,48 kg for weight, about 0,3 cm for chest girth for 9-year-old children; children of the first childhood levels are lower. Discussion. The intensity of secular trend increases for children of the second childhood as compared to the children of the previous ontogenetic period. This might relate to the different biological specificity of ontogenetic periods and different eco-sensitivity to the influence of environmental factors.


anthropology; auxology; physical development; children; preschool age; schoolchildren; height; weight; chest girth

DOI: 10.32521/2074-8132.2019.2.026-039

Цит.: Fedotova T.K. , Gorbacheva A.K. Secular trend of somatic dimensions of children of first and second childhood (based on data from Russia and former USSR) // Moscow University Anthropology Bulletin (Vestnik Moskovskogo Universiteta. Seria XXIII. Antropologia), 2019; 2/2019; с. 26-39

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