Popular methods to predict your Maximum Potential Height

by   |   Mar 14, 2021

Parents usually wonder whether it is possible for them to forecast their children’s maximum potential height. The same happens to many young kids and teens who want to predict their own futures. While we cannot foresee anything, there are a few ways to make a guess, here’s how to do so: 

Two Years Times Two method

This is the simplest, yet very popular method for parents to predict their children’s future height. This method is as easy as it sounds and has been used for quite a long time:

  1. Measure your child’s height at 2 years old.
  2. Multiply that height by 2 and you have his/her predicted maximum potential height.

It is believed that the earliest growth spurt from baby to toddler at 2 years old can account for roughly half of the child’s adult height. Girls develop more quickly so you can double their height at around 18 months. [1]


Mid-parental height method

The mid-parental height method, also known as the Tanner method, is to calculate the maximum potential height of a child considering his/her genetic potential based on the parents’ average height [2].

This is how you calculate:

  1. Record the genetic father and mother’ height.
  2. Average the two heights together.
  3. The predicted result will differ for boys and girls. For a boy: add 2 ½ inches to that average. For a girl: subtract 2 ½ inches to that average.

This is just a rough estimated full height and it is expected to have a margin of error. The taller the parents, the taller the child is likely to be in the future.


Growth chart recordings method

While there are many formulas to calculate the maximum potential height, this is the method to monitor the progress of your child’s growth over time to predict their height, based on the standardized growth charts of national averages for children of the same age and sex, separately for boys and girls. Regular recording of your child’s height and weight measurements, then plotting those numbers on the chart to keep track of their development is a good way to see if your child is growing well as expected.

This is how you use this method:

  1. Measure your child’s height.
  2. Plot it on the chart.
  3. Follow along on their growth curve – staying in the same percentile (for example, 90%, 97%). The result is their expected height.

Healthy children follow a curve on the chart, so you can see how consistently they grow over time and expect their height in the future. Additionally, it is a good way to reveal any potential problems to your children if they are not growing at a normal curve as well as to compare with their peers.


Genetic + Environmental factor

MPT = g (genetic factors) + e (environmental factors)

This formula considers both genetic factors and the environmental factors that affect the potential height of your child. It is suggested that your maximum potential height is mostly determined by your genes, but an average male can gain about 3.5 inches with the correct environmental factors in place throughout their life

There are several ways to calculate one’s height based on their parents’ height. It will be a basic guide for you to determine your potential height. Pediatrics may also ask you about other family members or the time of your puberty. While genetics cannot be controlled, it’s up to your choice to maximize your environmental conditions that can help you make a significant difference. Some external factors that have an impact on a child’s potential height include:

  • Nutrition: most people understand that a proper diet can contribute to maximize one’s height. And thus it’s important to check out all beneficial foods to increase height.
  • Sleep: along with nutrition, sufficient quality sleep can help you grow taller.
  • Exercise: regular exercise in the right way strongly assists you to accelerate your height.
  • Health conditions: children with illness or diseases may have their growth stunted.
  • Air quality: pollution can be a massive factor to hinder you from growing properly.

Although a child’s future height is affected by their heredity, it is possible that their growth can be varied beyond genetics. There are environmental factors that impact on their predetermined height, including nutrition, sleep, exercises, etc. Height calculation cannot take into account all these possible factors, but maximizing the extra difference you can gain is a decent way to make the most of your fullest height. 


  1. https://www.healthychildren.org/English/health-issues/conditions/Glands-Growth-Disorders/Pages/Predicting-a-Childs-Adult-Height.aspx, Healthychildren.org.
  2. https://www.verywellfamily.com/kids-height-predictors-3879394, Verywell Family.
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