Acta Anthropologica Sinica ›› 2020, Vol. 39 ›› Issue (03): 450-460.doi: 10.16359/j.cnki.cn11-1963/q.2019.0029

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Somatotype characteristics of the Mongolian in China

LI Yonglan1,2(), ZHENG Lianbin3   

  1. 1. College of life Sciences and Technology, Inner Mongolia Normal University, Hohhot 010022
    2. College of Ethnologys and Anthropology, Inner Mongolia Normal University, Hohhot 010022
    3. CollegIe of life Sciences, Tianjin Normal University, Key Laboratory of Animal and Plant Resistance, Tianjin 300387
  • Received:2018-01-24 Revised:2018-05-23 Online:2020-08-15 Published:2020-08-31


The Heath-Carter somatotyping method is used to study somatotypes of 4810 adults (2117 males and 2693 females) of 14 different Mongolian groups. Endomorphic and mesomorphic body shape of Mongolians are significantly positively correlated with age. In contrast, ectomorphic body shape is significantly negatively correlated with age; that is, with an increase of age, the body’s degree of linearity becomes smaller, and thus the somatotype tends to be round and thick. Male and female somatotypes of Mongolians in Chinaare all concentrated on the body shape of endo-mesomorph,balanced endo-mesomorph, meso-endoderm. With the increase of age, the occurrence of the three somatotypes is a significant positive correlation with age. Compared with the Han, Mongolians are more thick and strong. Our results of the principal components analysis show that the body’s degree of linearity is small, body fat is well developed and bone and muscle mass are less in Mongolians of the three northeastern provinces. On the standard somatotype chart, the point distribution of northern Mongolians is dense and shows that Mongolians in the north are closer in body shape to each other, and that Yunnan Mongolians in the south are very different because of small endomorphic and large ectomorphic traits. In Chinese ethnic groups that have been studied using the Heath-Carter somatotype, the Mongolian has the most developed body fat and the smallest body linearity degree.

Key words: Heath-Carter, Mongolian, Somatotype, Endomorphy, Ectomorphy

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