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How tall are you?

It looks very easy, but in fact many learners - even fairly advanced ones - often don't know how to ask this. I've met learners who can construct a correct present perfect continuous passive sentence in English, but don't know how to phrase this most banal of questions. Just remember: asking about height is the same as asking about age : 'How old are you?' 'How tall are you?'

That's the question...so what about the answer? Well, that's not so obvious either. The US uses feet and inches, while most of the rest of the world uses metres and centimetres. The UK is a bit undecided in this respect. By law, we have to use metric measurements in shops and businesses, and in science and technology. But in the personal sphere, we still use feet and inches for measuring height and body parts (stop sniggering at the back of the class, please).

So, here's a small exercise in international communication. If you normally measure yourself in metres (GB) or meters (US), go to this page to find out the equivalent in feet and inches.

http://www.metric-conversions.org/length/meters-to-feet.htm

And if you normally measure yourself in feet and inches, go to this page:

http://www.metric-conversions.org/length/feet-to-meters.htm

For example

'How tall are you?' 'I'm 1.80m

'How tall are you?' 'I'm 5 ft 11in.

 

You can even help other learners by telling us how to say 'How tall are you?' in your language. There's rarely a word-for-word translation from one language to another when it comes to everyday questions about weights, measures and sizes, so it'll be a useful lesson for all of us.

 

We can also find out who's the tallest and shortest person here on italki. Be honest!

Feb 24, 2015 10:40 AM
Comments · 73

In Iran we use standard units of measurement. In old Iran there were many different units for height and weight, but they aren't used anymore.

 

I'm 160 cm. 5 ft 2 inches. You finally forced me to convert my height to feet! I really get confused when I read American novels and I can't imagine distances and heights in miles, feet, yard and any other non-standard unit.

February 25, 2015

Great post!
I am Australian and we always use the metric system EXCEPT when we are talking about height. 
Some people talk about their height in feet and some use metres.
I am 5'10", but I struggle to remember what that is in metric. 
Other people can tell you how tall they are in metres but not in feet. 

February 24, 2015

how could i chat with u?

i appreciate your mother language

February 24, 2015

hello

i want to be friends with u

could u help improve my english? And my english is so poor~~

February 24, 2015

My comment on your discussion will revive it so new comments might be added after four years. How tall am I? I am 1.66 m.

Thanks for relating this question with HOW OLD ARE YOU? bacause this will make it stuck in our minds.

February 8, 2019
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La Liseuse
Language Skills
English, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish
Learning Language
Spanish