3D visualisation of psychometric estimates for the ideal male body

Sophie Mohamed, Robin Kramer, Tracey Thornborrow, Thomas Pollet, Martin Tovee*, Piers Cornelissen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Psychological concerns are frequently indexed by psychometric questionnaires but the mental representations that they seek to quantify are difficult to visualise. We used a set of questionnaires designed to measure men's concept of their bodies including: the Drive for Muscularity Scale (DMS; McCreary & Sasse, 2000), the Perceived Sociocultural Pressures Scale (PSPS; Stice, Nemeroff, & Shaw, 1996a), the Body Appreciation Scale (BAS-2; Tylka & Wood-Barcalow, 2015), and the Sociocultural Attitudes Towards Appearance Questionnaire-3 (SATAQ-3; Thompson, van den Berg, Roehrig, Guarda, & Heinberg, 2004). We combined their use with an interactive 3D modelling programme to allow men to create computer-generated representations of their ideal bodies. We used a principal component analysis to extract those shape components of our participants’ CGI ideal bodies that were predicted by the questionnaires and reconstructed the body shapes that these questionnaires were capturing. Moving from the lowest to the highest score on both the DMS and SATAQ corresponded with changes in muscularity, particularly muscle mass and definition. This approach allows us to demonstrate the actual body features that are being captured by a particular questionnaire.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)295-305
Number of pages11
JournalBody Image
Early online date21 May 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2021


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