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Thread: How does height affect your job?
03-22-2007, 22:47 #1checker Guest
How does height affect your job?
Hopefully this is in the right place. I've wondered a lot lately about how much height may make a LE job more difficult. I'm a five foot eight male, about 170 pounds, putting me at the shorter end of the people spectrum (however, I can lift about 100 pounds over my weight). I was just curious how many "shorter" officers are on here and would like to know if your height makes the job any more difficult than it already is? Or is it not really an issue? Just seeking some input from those with experience.
03-22-2007, 22:55 #2Sergeant
- Join Date
- Aug 2005
- Los Angeles, CA
I think it's the opposite. I think there are too many officers who are short that overcompensate for their shortness... ala short-man syndrome.
Other than that, I don't see it as much of a problem. If you're short but you have good muscles, a nice V-shaped torso, and good verbal judo, you shouldn't have a significant difference than a giant officer. Or you can get your uniform shirt tailored so that they appear tight around your biceps.
03-23-2007, 02:12 #3
I don't the height really comes in to play all that often. Its the manner in which you present yourself which makes the difference when getting people to respond in the manner that you want. Always project that you are the one who is in control of the situation. If you are sure of yourself and speak with a steady,clear authoritative voice you can control most situations.Quick thinking will get you out of a dangerous situation a lot faster than height,muscles or quick fists.
03-23-2007, 09:56 #4
I'm 6-6, and I've noticed some back issues from getting in and out of the car so often. But, it may have nothing to do with height.
03-23-2007, 11:57 #5
I check in at just under 5'10, and weigh around 205 most days. Granted, I spend a couple minutes here and there in the gym. I think statistically I fall right into the middle of the pack for height, although it seems to me that everybody else is taller. However, I have yet to notice anything job-related where it has negatively impacted me. In fact, I have an advantage over the 6' plus guys--I can drive every car in our fleet and be perfectly comfortable. The only time I notice shorter guys having problems is when, as Johnny said, they have an obvious case of little man syndrome, and their personalities cause situations to escalate that otherwise wouldn't have.
If you step out of your car at a location and look and act like you're in charge, are totally professional, and look like you can handle your business, then nobody's going to notice your size. They'll see the badge and the uniform and you might as well be 6'6 in their eyes. As per one of my favorite movie lines of all time: Power perceived is power achieved."The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in the moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy." -- Martin Luther King
"Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?" And I said, "Here am I. Send me."
03-23-2007, 12:42 #6
I'm 6'3 230. I'm sure my size intimidates some but not always so I don't rely on it to prevent problems. There's always somebody bigger and not everybody is intimidated by somebody bigger than them.
Height isn't that big of an issue. Don't sweat it. Besides the taser is a great equalizer....if you see me running try to keep up!
03-23-2007, 18:06 #7checker Guest
Good to hear these things. I'm glad the car may be more comfortable too...except for the fact that it can't be too comfortable sitting on a utility belt all day/night. At least now I don't have to worry about stuffing my shoes with paper or anything crazy like that now .
03-23-2007, 21:47 #8
03-24-2007, 01:12 #9Lieutenant
- Join Date
- May 2005
I'll pipe in I'm 6 foot 140, and I don't physically fit in my issued chevy s-10 the way the computer and crap is put in the truck/car I can't move the seat and I keep rocking my knee on the laptop. We're gunna have a meeting and I think we're going to RPG the car. I also found people like to think I'm a pushover because I'm very skinny. So I've become good at using verbal commands and talking my way around problems because scrapping with someone two bills isn't fun.Greetings. This is not God, This is his close friend Officer Boscorelli. Please pull over - Bosco
03-24-2007, 08:01 #10Sergeant
- Join Date
- Aug 2004
- Gulf Coast
I'm six foot three. This week we were searching a house and I went into a closet that a shorter agent was searching. He asked if I could hand him a chair from in the room so that he could look at the upper closet shelf. I told him that I could see it fine, and there was nothing there.Speed, surprise and [low tolerance for non-compliance].
03-24-2007, 23:21 #11Rookie
- Join Date
- May 2003
- As South as it gets
Im 5'8 190lbs. I've never had any issues with height. As long as you know how to handle yourself (verbally and physically) you will not have any problems.
03-24-2007, 23:31 #12
03-25-2007, 14:52 #13
On a side note, my former girlfriend is an NYPD cop in a tough precinct. She comes up to about my shoulder. She's a total pro, but no one doubts she will kick your a** if it comes down to it. There is no part of the job she can't do, irrespective of size.
Last edited by The Brown Hornet; 03-25-2007 at 15:01.
03-25-2007, 20:16 #14
5'8" and 165 here. I have no problems with any cars in my fleet and am confortable in all. I will just piggyback on what some others have said about verbal commands, controlling the scene, etc. I have had a couple scraps with bigger guys, but each time they have lost. Keep yourself physically fit and practice your verbal judo, defensive tactics, and command, and you will be fine.Always check your 6.
03-26-2007, 00:04 #15
For the record
To chime in on this, I'm 6'3" @ 270.
In my experiences, it seems to drunk guys or dopers gravitate to thinking they can kick my .....!!
I'm a mellow, quiet guy. I'm more the diversion.
My shift loves to go into a situation with me due to ~ the perp will be looking at me just before being laid out by the Def. Tact. "Little Guy" Officer.
You'll be fine. Know your abilities and capabilities. Always know what to do, when to do it, and how to do it - as it needs done. "They don't pay me to fight fair, only to win".