Properly Measuring Your Hips?

I won't say how long I've been on this Earth, but in all that time, I apparently never knew the right way to measure hips. When looking up the size chart for a pair of pants on Under Armour, I was surprised by the diagram posted which showed the measure going around the area where the torso meets the thighs... what I'd consider measuring around my butt not my hips. Then I started Googling, thinking that can't be right. But, on the Livestrong site, sure enough they said the same thing. When measuring your body fat for health and fitness, and taking a tape measure, you don't look in the mirror facing towards it to determine your hip measure. Instead, you turn sideways to the mirror and look at what is the widest part, usually that lower region that goes around the butt near the top of the thighs. Those are the hips you're supposed to be measuring. Did you know that? How many of you actually measure that? How many of you even realize that it is actually bigger than what looks like the widest part of your hips face on? It's a solid inch and a half or more on me. I've been tracking my inches already using the area a couple inches or so below my belly button and around the widest portion of my hips as my hip measurement. For buying pants in the correct size, I will now know to measure the other section. And for tracking, I've decided I'll just add it in as an extra measurement calling it "butt". That way it won't mess up my existing hip measurement tracking. But I was really interested to learn this. I had no idea. So I thought I would share it. Who else on here was measuring their "hips" wrong?


  • lorrpb
    lorrpb Posts: 11,465 Member
    edited January 2016
    Around the widest part of your hips, legs together, tape measure level all the way around, snug, not tight and not loose. For your personal tracking purposes, it doesn't really matter where you measure, but do it in the exact same place every time. You are looking for the comparison from time to time. Being even an inch higher or lower can drastically affect the number, especially in that curvy part of the body.
  • Whitezombiegirl
    Whitezombiegirl Posts: 1,044 Member
    I knew it, but then i sew so i need to be able to measure correctly.
  • HealthyBodySickMind
    HealthyBodySickMind Posts: 1,206 Member
    edited January 2016
    I am in the same boat as you. I learned this a few years ago, but I still have a check in measurement for "hip" and an additional one for "butt." I learned the difference when buying clothes online and using the measurement guides.

    In a related matter, it is very handy to have a place (mfp) online with all my measurements for online shopping.
  • williams969
    williams969 Posts: 2,528 Member
    I measure both "high hip", which is where my illiac crest is (I have a convenient mole there, so it's my marker), and my "low hip", which is the widest part of my butt. I find both measurements useful.
  • Doberdawn
    Doberdawn Posts: 732 Member
    That's how I learned it... ordering pants online. LOL
  • arditarose
    arditarose Posts: 15,575 Member
    Yes...of course. Widest part of your hips is around your butt, right? I thought it was common sense.

    I used to take a high hip measurement as well, just to track. But I never considered that my hip measurement.
  • Sumiblue
    Sumiblue Posts: 1,584 Member
    Yup, measure at the widest part.
  • callsitlikeiseeit
    callsitlikeiseeit Posts: 8,633 Member
    arditarose wrote: »
    Yes...of course. Widest part of your hips is around your butt, right? I thought it was common sense.

    as my dad says... common sense isn't so common.....

  • paulandrachelk
    paulandrachelk Posts: 280 Member
  • 1PoisonIvy
    1PoisonIvy Posts: 889 Member
    My gut is what makes my hips big
  • VeryKatie
    VeryKatie Posts: 5,863 Member
    edited January 2016
    I always assumed it was where ever it is widest. So I slid the tape measure up and down till I saw the highest number, and that was at the low part of my butt and my saddle bags. I wasn't sure if that was right, but it's how I decided to do it. It's how surveyors do it with ground elevations :) (except they use lowest number to determine when the stick is straight).
  • ahoy_m8
    ahoy_m8 Posts: 2,785 Member
    edited January 2016
    Yep, did it wrong for a while. Thought it was at my actual hip bones. Plus I have a scar that's convenient for measuring consistently there. Nope. Now I do the ground elevation method, and I have no idea how consistent I am. I'm pretty bad at measuring.

    ETA: I completely agree "butt" would be a more accurate description.