Sports anthropological investigation of male basketball players of different performance classes


  • Christoph Raschka Institute of Sports Sciences, Julius Maximilians University Würzburg
  • Thorsten Müller Institute of Sports Sciences, Julius Maximilians University Würzburg
  • Alexander Ludwig Institute of Sports Sciences, Julius Maximilians University Würzburg



sports anthropological investigation, male basketball players


The present study focused on somatotypical and sports anthropological differences in German basketball players of different position and performance classes. German basketball players (n=64) from Hesse and North Rhine-Westphalia (the mean age 26.8±6.3 years) were divided by league affiliation in 3 pools (2./3. Division, 4./5. Division and 6./7. Division) and differentiated to their positions (center, winger, guards). They were measured according to the standardized guidelines of sports anthropology. The body height of the pool 1 guards averaged 187.2±5.3 cm, the body height of the center players 205.4±5.7 cm, and the body height of the wingers 191.5±4.7 cm (p<0.001 relative to the position, p<0.01 with respect to the performance level). Calipermetry showed a significantly higher percentage of the body fat of the lower divisions. In the top divisions, the body fat percentages were 13.2% for the guards, 20% for the centers and 18.3% for the wingers (p<0.001).

The mean somatotypes were 4.0 – 4.4 – 2.8 for all the guards, 5.7 – 4.5 – 2.5 for all the center players and 4.5 – 4.5 – 2.6 for all the wingers.

Today’s German basketball players are tall and leggy. The athletes of the middle and lower levels have a higher fat content. With respect to the playing position the guards are relatively smaller players with the lower percentage of body fat. The center players show the highest body weight and the body height dimensions, wherein the wingers are classified as player somatotypes therebetween.


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