Oh no, you dropped your blank sheets of paper.
Here's the formula: Take an attractive girl or woman and make her more approachable by adding in some klutziness
Like many other klutz characters, a Cute Clumsy Girl's clumsiness rarely does her
serious harm, but can often set off Rube Goldberg-like chain reactions of disasters
. She's never seriously injured, though, and she always pops back up with a good-natured, but rueful, smile. It is almost inevitable that at some point her clumsiness will result in a Crash into Hello
Occasionally, the klutziness pseudo-flaw is used for a male character, but only rarely, as it is not seen as quite as endearing in males. A clumsy male character will more often be used for straight-up Slapstick
(and usually will
get hurt), perhaps because of a Double Standard
relating to Amusing Injuries
See also: The Klutz
(the supertrope) and the fanspeak page Dojikko
(for an examination of this character in anime-specific subculture). If the klutziness tends to take care of her enemies without her even realizing it
, she is also The Fool
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Anime and Manga
- Sailor Moon:
- Usagi Tsukino/Sailor Moon is very prone to tripping, and first meets her cat familiar Luna by tripping over her, and faceplanting while running Late for School.
- Minako Aino/Sailor Venus. Minako's clumsiness zigzags depending on the situation, as she's perfectly able to take part in sports but outside of that (and being a superhero) is incredibly clumsy.
- Wagashino Azuki from Sweet Ninja Girl Azuki, so much so that "I'm so sorry Master Sanae!" might well be her Catch Phrase. Combines this with Genki Girl traits, with disastrous(ly comical) results.
- Misuzu from AIR; the reason we can tell her past life the first time we see her is by her Crash into Hello introduction.
- Continuing the Key Visual Arts examples, Little Busters! has Komari, a major recipient of the Slapstick Knows no Gender rule.
- ME-Tan, Anthropomorphic Personification of the Windows ME operating system from the "OS-Tan" Internet meme, has a tendency to crash a lot. Just like the operating system.
- Matsuri from Strawberry Marshmallow. Lampshaded in an episode which summarizes her average day, showing that she can barely get through a day of school without constant help from Ana. After hearing the summary, Miu comments "That's the usual!? This isn't a manga for crying out loud! Do you really think Matsuri will be able to function in the real world!?"
- Elfen Lied:
- Deconstructed messily by Kisaragi. Unfortunately, despite being one of the few characters with any significant dialogue in the first episode, she gets her head ripped off ten minutes in.
- Nana also counts. It's justified since all her limbs were sliced off by Lucy, and she has to use artificial limbs controlled by her vectors. In fact, they constantly become detached due to her clumsiness.
- Chise in Saikano both falls into and inverts this trope. Normally she's rather klutzy, but in her Ultimate Weapon mode she is incredibly, horrifically graceful and efficient.
- In the OVA she's seen stumbling cutely in the battlefield to the confusion of the American soldiers who try to determine if she's a threat or not. Then she vaporizes everything in a mile radius.
- Hinata Hyuuga of Naruto fits the bill when around her crush; otherwise, she seems to be fairly competent, although typically pretty Shrinking Violet.
- That is the first opinion Ritsu gave to Yui in K-On!.
- Miyako from Sasameki Koto. Though her appearance hides a somewhat manipulative personality.
- Izumi seems to have this as part of her personality as well.
- Satsuki Miyanoshita from Ghost Stories shows of her panties to the same boy once each in the first two episodes. One with a thoughtless fall in a new room of her new house, once when tripping on a can purposefully put in her place.
- Male example in Katekyo Hitman Reborn!. Dino, when he isn't around his subordinates, is a complete klutz, taking this trope to the extreme.
- In Cardcaptor Sakura, Sakura's mother Nadeshiko is revealed to be this. In the flashback to her and Sonomi's teen years, she: tripped on her own feet while going to school, crashed into a tree while skiing, bumped on the high jump implements and fell to the ground in front of her whole class, and fell off a tree while trying to return a birdie to its nest. Bonus on the last one for falling on top of a Hot Teacher named Fujitaka Kinomoto, whom she'd marry after graduation.
- Lettuce from Tokyo Mew Mew has never met a plate she hasn't dropped.
- Kisaragi of GA Geijutsuka Art Design Class, like, being "it" in a game of tag for 157 minutes.
- Asu no Yoichi!:
- Tsubame Tsubasa. Whose clumsiness is actually caused by the conflict between the lifestyle she is supposed to practice (being a top-class ninja) and the lifestyle which she wants to practice (being a normal schoolgirl). But she becomes a top-class fighter when she's stripped.
- Kagome. It's hinted at in the anime, but better stated in the manga, that this is (also) why she sits out of PE classes and why she doesn't practice martial arts like her eldest sister.
- Taiga Aisaka of ToraDora. as a matter of fact in the beginning of the series she attempts to give her Love Interest a letter...and forgets to put it into the envelope! Throughout the series several comments are made about how she also seems "clumsy in love". However unlike most examples she seems to be much more serious and her clumsiness isn't played up for Fanservice.
- This is the defining trait of Akira Miyata from Pani Poni Dash!.
- Mey-rin, Ciel's maid from Black Butler is a classic example of this. Unless she's in Cold Sniper mode
- Miranda Lotto from D.Gray-Man, despite being older than most examples, fits the bill nicely once Beautiful All Along kicks in.
- Oku-sama wa Mahou Shoujo has Ureshiko. Even if she's quite a lot older than your standard Magical Girl heroine, she never grew out of her clumsiness.
- Tear from the recent chapters of To Love-ru Darkness definitely qualifies, despite being older than the average girl here.
- Misaki from Hana No Mizo Shiru is a male example. He knocks things over, drops things and runs into people at the train station frequently. Naturally Arikawa, his love interest, finds it cute.
- Miyabi from Arata Kangatari, a handmaiden to Kadowaki who's not exactly good at her job.
- The titular protagonist in Kotoura-san. This trait has been implied in the OP, having her tripped over herself twice; but she officially admitted that in episode 5, in which she trips over nothing at all at an important moment.
- Muteki Kanban Musume: Burger Fool Miki stages a Engineered Public Confession denouncing that The Rival The Fake Cutie Megumi served Miki her coffee with salt instead of sugar, so Megumi’s clients can realize she is really a Bitch in Sheep's Clothing. Megumi apologizes and invokes being a Dojikko. Megumi’s clients forgive her and think she is even more adorable.
- Mirai in Kyoukai no Kanata. A really odd example, because she's also an extremely agile swordfighter; she can catapult herself down hallways and execute precise leaps and attack maneuvers, moments before tripping over a mop and getting her head stuck in a bucket.
- Hiyariko from Anpanman. She trips on random items left out (some normal, like a banana peel or a skateboard, other times random, like a dumbbell), which messes with her science experiments, making her drop her potion spray bottles and causing them to go off and spray an unfortunate ghost. In fact, her introduction has her accidentally tripping down a flight of stairs.
Films — Animated
Films — Live-Action
- The main character of Pure Luck personifies this trope.
- Francis Veber's comedy La Chčvre uses both male and female versions of this. The female version who fits the description very well has been kidnapped, and a male character who combines clumsiness with And You Thought It Was a Game behavior is used to help find her, on the assumption that he will exhibit the same behaviors/take the same route as she did.
- Jessica Alba's character in Good Luck Chuck could be seen as a deconstruction as she is mentioned to have broken multiple bones, stating she has been seriously injured because of this in the past.
- Bridget Jones is made of this trope.
- In The Three Musketeers (1973), Raquel Welch's character Constance Bonacieux, d'Artagnan's sweetheart. If it could be tripped over, knocked over, or dropped, Constance would do it. At one point, d'Artagnan hears the crash of a large potted plant falling off a balcony, looks and sees a lady standing on the balcony, and says with satisfaction, "That has to be Constance." It is.
- Julianne Moore in Evolution perpetually trips over things, walks into walls, etc., to the point that one wonders how she's survived as long as she has.
- Female leads in romantic comedies are guaranteed to either trip in their high heels or some similarly "cute" pratfall at least once.
- A (young, timid) male example: Danny in Local Hero is endearingly clumsy.
- Rachel Weisz as Evy in The Mummy. In her first scene, she accidentally destroys an entire library.
- Amy Adams in Leap Year. Amongst many other disasters she manages to demolish a (admittedly slightly shabby) hotel room while simply trying to plug in her Blackberry.
- Prudence Perkins in the Western spoof Support Your Local Sheriff, although she mitigates it somewhat by being an expert shot with a rifle.
- Mia in The Princess Diaries. Anne Hathaway was reportedly given the role after she slipped and fell off the chair during her audition. Funnily enough the part of the movie where Mia slips and falls off the bleachers was not scripted but was left in there because the director felt it was funny and still fit the character.
- In The Wizard of Oz, the Scarecrow is incredibly clumsy, yet adorable too. Perhaps that's why Dorothy missed him the most-he was such a funny clumsy man.
- Another male example with Clark Kent, who's the epitome of an endearing klutz in Superman and its sequels.
- Grace, of Blood Sucking Pharaohs In Pittsburgh, at least while on roller-skates.
- The Star Trek: The Next Generation book Q-In-Law had a subplot which concerned Wesley (in a very animé-reminiscent plot) receiving an alien servant girl who wasted no time in proclaiming her eternal love and devotion to him. Unfortunately, she turned out to be so clumsy she caused Wesley serious physical harm on a number of occasions.
- Cavendon Hall: De Lacy. In one of her first scenes, she ruins one of Daphne's ballgowns by knocking into an inkpot. She's not seen very much after that, so it's hard to tell if she grows out of this or not.
- Bella Swan of Twilight seems to have an uncanny ability to lose her balance to the point that she's able to pass off the wounds from a vampire attack by claiming to have fallen down two flights of stairs and through a window without anyone getting suspicious. It got to a point where her father didn't even mind when she comes home with bandages after getting attacked by Jasper in New Moon.
- Geraden from Stephen Donaldson's Mordant's Need is a male example; one incident among many is falling into a pigswallow in his eagerness to meet the king, and so appearing before his monarch dripping dirty water and rotten vegetables.
- Tonks from Harry Potter. The first thing she does in the series is smash a plate. Amazingly, this woman is somehow a world class dark wizard hunter.
- Although she herself said that her clumsiness almost made her fail some Auror class, and that she only passed by acing others.
- The Scarecrow from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz' is very clumsy and often walks straight into potholes, but luckily he doesn't feel anything and instead laughs with the others or Dorothy at his own clumsiness or mishaps.
Live Action TV
- Occasionally used in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, especially when Buffy is around Riley. See, for instance, the Meet Cute when she dumps a pile of textbooks on his head, or the scene where he watches her struggle through a lunch line, accidentally breaking the soft serve machine.
- Kelly in HawthoRNe has at least some of these traits, being a very nervous young nurse who lacks confidence and apologizes a lot.
- On Scrubs, JD's girlfriend Julie was this in spades. In attempting a slow motion romantic run across the field to hug each other, she managed to miss him and clothesline him with her arm as she tripped and did a full flip before coming down on top of him. Whenever she pulls something like this, the other characters usually shake their heads and comment that "she is not graceful."
- Elliot had her moments as well.
- Chrissy on Three's Company.
- After Suzanne Somers, who played Chrissy, left the show over a salary dispute, they brought in Chrissy's cousin Cindy who was even more clumsy, with Jack being the one injured whenever she was around.
- Ensign Sonia Gomez on Star Trek: The Next Generation may have ended up this way had she become the recurring character she was intended to, based on her introduction, wherein she spilled hot chocolate on Captain Picard.
- In Sign, a Korean Drama, Dr Go Da Kyung knocks over an entire bookshelf in Dr Yoon Ji Hoon's office and ends up pinned underneath it.
- Grace during the first season of Student Bodies.
- Former Price Is Right model Holly Halstrom, back in the Bob Barker days. To be fair, all of the Barker's Beauties occasionally had trouble with the various props and set pieces, but Holly seemed to have the most trouble, as seen here.
- Current model Rachel Reynolds is getting a bit of that reputation: She crashed a prize car into a stage door, for starters.
- Despite what she is later revealed to be, Agent Lee on NCIS qualifies.
- Susan in Desperate Housewives is the embodiment of this trope. She can't walk five feet without tripping and setting something on fire.
- Nova the fairy and her real-world incarnation as Sister Astrid in Once Upon a Time
- Hanaori Kotoha/Shinken Yellow of Samurai Sentai Shinkenger.
- Zooey Deschanel's character in New Girl.
- Princess Elena in Merlin. The first thing she does on meeting Prince Arthur is fall flat on her face.
- Rare Male Example: Title character Chuck Bartowski in the first two seasons tends to be rather clumsy when attempting spy work in the field, Justified in that he has no formal training and is just incredibly Genre Savvy and often making it up as he goes. Even after Taking A Level In Badass he can still be this. Like accidentally shooting down Casey's helicopter with his own Desert Eagle!
- Jo Grant in Doctor Who. There was a bit of Real Life Writes the Plot here; the actress Katy Manning is quite short-sighted, and didn't wear her glasses in the role.
- The Girl of the Week in the Frasier episode "Sliding Frasiers", who had a Meet Cute tripping him up. "Her name is Monica, she's a commercial artist, she's cute as a button, and she's a danger to herself and others." At one point he phones her and jokingly asks if she's injured anyone since they last spoke. She has.
- Rare Male Example: The mustachioed boyfriend in Juice Newton's video for "Love's Been A Little Bit Hard On Me" takes this past cute and into painful territory, as every time he tries to be gallant, he ends up hurting Juice due to his clumsiness. She's in traction by the end of the song.
- The main character of the music video to Happily Ever After by He Is We. She manages to injure three potential boyfriends and gives up and orders a self help book before she finds true love in a man who is just as klutzy as she.
- In the long-form David Bowie video Jazzin' for Blue Jean, his protagonist Vic is a male example — in the opening scene he bumps his nose and slides down his ladder after moving it out of the way of his dream girl, and later he loses control of his hair dryer.
- The DS Castlevania games feature the "Student Witch", whose main attack is to take to the air on her broomstick, then fall on you when you walk under her. They're almost too cute to kill, and indeed the game doesn't let you: Defeating them causes them to turn into cats and run away (though some of them are kind enough to leave their souls).
- Special Mention must go to Charlotte from Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin. While her skirt obviously flies up at the slightest provocation (jumping down, ducking and standing up, etc.) an especially funny joke is with the Persephone armed with her vacuum. She'll blow air under her skirt causing her to hold it down for a second. Especially funnier in the Japanese dub, since "Nani?!" is inherently funnier than "What?!". To be fair, it's much more played for laughs than to titillate (In the Sorrow duology, you can pull the same trick on Persephones and Student Witches with your own vacuum).
- Also, whenever Charlotte falls from a high place, gets knocked down, or gets hit in mid-air, she lands on her little bottom instead of on her feet. She does land a little bit more gracefully than the student witch though.
- Meru from The Legend of Dragoon has a victory pose where she proudly thrusts her hammer skyward, then falls over. She then sits up and rubs the back of her head in embarrassment.
- Isabelle, the Adorkable mayor's secretary from Animal Crossing: New Leaf is this to the point where she even forgets her own boss' name at the beginning of the game.
- Viki from the Suikoden series. Her clumsiness manifests in her tendency to sneeze herself through time and space. At the end of each game, she accidentally teleports herself from the victory banquet into the next game, despite each game being set many years apart, and not in chronological order. As a result, Viki has served in at least five wars non-stop. Six if you count the time there was two of her in Suikoden III.
- Carol from Wild ARMs 5. Her regular attack consists of her shooting a rocket launcher bigger than she is, then falling on her butt. She also tends to trip and fall when confronted with boys and is in general adorable.
- Colette from Tales of Symphonia. She always trips when needed (breaking things, stealing, etc.), despite having wings. To a lesser extent with Sheena (she even known as "Clumsy Assassin." before joining the party).
- Colette eventually even turns her clumsiness into an attack, which involves falling on the enemy. And stealing from them.
- Linu in Neverwinter Nights, played up for extreme comedy.
- To give you some idea of this, when you first meet Linu, you can ask how she stained her clothes. She replies by telling you how she accidentally spilled several drinks, knocked over several people, and unwittingly instigated a barroom brawl. Afterwards, she apparently stained her clothes while trying to help clean up. If you ask her why she didn't just say so, she replies "I didn't want you to think I was clumsy."
- Merrill in Dragon Age II. While her awkwardness is certainly adorable, it contrasts sharply with her status as Black Magician Girl.
- Bloody Roar 3 & Primal Fury uses this as a gameplay mechanic for Uriko. Her fighting style is heavily dependent on the use of her 6-way combo ring systemnote . If you simply mash on the buttons, or enter any of her commands incorrectly, she loses balance which the game treats as Uriko being staggered. Meaning, any attacks against her while in this state results in automatic counter damage, which can spell disaster since she has the worst stamina in the game.
- Final Fantasy VII: This'd be Yuffie, though it's more prevalent in the spin-offs such as Kingdom Hearts II and Dirge of Cerberus, where she has a habit of standing atop tall structures and proclaiming her name — only to lose her balance and fall flat on her backside, or hit her head.
- Lolo from Klonoa 2: Lunatea's Veil. Resolves to be more careful in holding on to the Elements and wastes no time in proving her point by dropping one. And she falls on her face in just about every other cutscene, including her variant of the title screen intro.
- Mignon from King of Fighters: Maximum Impact; her introduction in both games is to run into the arena... and trip on the door. When she uses her super moves, they typically throw her back several feet.
- Even Katamari Damacy invokes this with Royal Cousin Honey; the King describes her with "She's very clumsy, but We think that's what makes her so cute!"
- Shurelia from Ar tonelico starts off as a somewhat cold Lady of War, but after you actually get her into your party and put her into a costume other than the Linker suit, it becomes apparent that she's incredibly clumsy. She will actually fall over after casting spells, and gets lost repeatedly in the course of the game. In spite of all of this, she's probably the smartest character in the game.
- Mega Man Powered Up for PSP makes Roll look like this — whenever she teleports into a stage, she's a couple of feet off the ground and lands on her rump. (It's cute the first few times.) The question here is who's actually operating the teleporter.
- Dragon Quest VII gives us Aimy from Litorud, who tends to start each morning by falling down the stairs at the inn where she works. This actually ties into the plot, as it turns out the reason she falls down the stairs every morning is becase it's the same morning.
- One stage in SD Splatterhouse: Naughty Graffiti for the Famicom featured robot maids who attack by tripping and spilling hot tea on you.
- Pamela Ibis of the Atelier Iris and Mana Khemia was apparently one of these until she died and became a Cute Ghost Girl. According to Atelier Iris 3, she died because she fell off a stool while trying to get some cooking implements out of a cupboard and landed on her head.
- Bianca in Pokémon Black and White and Pokémon Black 2 and White 2. This also applies to her anime counterpart.
- Compa in Hyperdimension Neptunia mk2, who has attacks consisting mostly of flailing in the enemy's general direction, and a victory pose that involves falling flat on her butt. One of her starting accessories is a bandage, described as a generic band-aid kept in plentiful supply at the hospital Compa interns at... mostly for her.
- Sakura Shinguuji and Gemini Sunrise from Sakura Taisen, but they're not nearly as bad as Erica Fontaine from the third and fourth games. In the DS installment, Erica can actually trip while your party's walking around and lose HP (which doesn't stay cute for long).
- Sumia from Fire Emblem Awakening. Miriel actually lampshades the use of this trope ("Displays of helplessness serve to attract mates of a protective predisposition") during a conversation in the Summer Scramble DLC Chapter.
- Her daughter from the future Cynthia seems to have inherited this trait as well.
- Xiao Pai in Rune Factory 4 is always breaking dishes and often trips or does other clumsy things.
- Ace Attorney:
- Adrian Andrews, though it's shown primarily in the third game (her second appearance).
- Maggey Byrde. She fell from the 9th floor of a building as a baby, got hit by all sort of vehicles, got sick from all sorts of food, failed every test she has ever taken, lost every game of tic-tac-toe she's ever played, was framed for murder three times (one of which was a mistrial)... She was even nicknamed Goddess of Misfortune as a child, and Lady Luckless by the time she reached college.
- Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies 's Athena Cykes in her Establishing Character Moment in Case 5-1 shows off her advanced tech, proudly marches up the courtroom stairs, then trips and tumbles down to the bottom.
- Da Capo's Yoriko is rather ditzy and bad at the housework she insists on doing. Though in a subversion, once she learns how she's actually not very clumsy at all and rather good at cooking.
- Katawa Shoujo's Yuuko, with bonus points for being a meganekko librarian. When you meet her, she'd dropped a book under the table, then dropped her pencil while looking for it, and then hit her head on the table when she heard you coming in. Fortunately, it doesn't seem to much affect her side job as a waitress.
- Chigara Ashada from Sunrider.
- Mikan Tsumiki from Super Dangan Ronpa 2, who tends to end up in rather embarrassing poses as a result of her clumsiness. It's implied that she exaggerates some of her clumsiness, since years of being bullied have convinced her that the only way to get attention is to humiliate herself in front of people.
- Kimiko from Megatokyo, usually limited to her coffee pots at the Anna Miller's.
- Deconstructed by Steve's new love interest Cosette in Questionable Content, who at one point had a black eye and crutches.
- Yeon from Tower of God. Being a black haired beauty and having bare shoulders makes her more of a hot clumsy girl. Literally, since she often enough accidentally burns her teammates so hard that they fall out of the current test. But that's just part of her character. Which got, despite appearing only in three chapters so far got her to be one of the most popular characters of the series.
- Karin-dou 4koma dedicates a page to this aspect of Meguru. When she does laundry, she fills the room with suds. When she vacuums, she breaks sliding doors. She burns everything she cooks except for karaage—but the karaage always turns out in massive quantities for some reason. But she is still cute.
- Survival of the Fittest's Lucy Ashmore has her moments, such as spilling school supplies all over the place when opening her pencil case, or accidentally pouring water on someone's leg. However, this is more out of nervousness, due to being picked on.
- The former half of Alice And Kev was simulated with the "clumsy" and "unlucky" traits. The first time she was invited into someone else's house, she broke everything he owned.
- The ever Genre Savvy Mac of Tales of MU at one point even acknowledges that she hasn't had her "daily pratfall" and worries when it will happen. This is, presumably, one way to cause her to appear less threatening, considering her status as a half-demon with super-strength and the ability to conjure fire essentially at will.
- Amy Wong from Futurama
- June and Loopy of KaBlam!, as an entire episode was about Loopy's clumsiness and June can be shown a bit clumsy herself.
- Jeanette from Alvin and the Chipmunks.
- Bridgette from Total Drama Island is the cute surfer Granola Girl of the team, who seems to only be coordinated in the water. She's messed up several challenges by being a spaz.
- Daphne in the early days of Scooby-Doo.
- Melody on Josie and the Pussycats.
- The Jabberjaw Bubbles. The Bubbles on The Powerpuff Girls has some random moments of ditziness but she balances it out with some common sense that her sisters are unaware of and don't possess.
- Girl of the Week Annie from Generator Rex serves as a rather terrifying parody of this. Within the time span of one date, she has managed to put Rex's life in danger no less than ten times.... and it's implied that he only survived that long because he happens to be a superhuman Swiss Army Hero. Previous dates were... less lucky.
- Irma in the 1987 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles when she gets the big role in an episode.
- My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic presents us with quite a few examples:
- Sweetie Belle, who can invoke Disaster Dominoes in a dress shop just by fetching a spool of ribbon. To be fair, she's a filly.
- Derpy Hooves, who manages to continue to break things by sitting down and doing nothing as ordered.
- Twilight Sparkle. Since early on in the show, she's shown to be quite awkward whenever she tries to do any hands-on job that isn't rearranging the library, and she hasn't gotten much better since then. Goes double if she tries to do it without using magic.
- Dr. Roxanne "Rocky" Ballentine from the Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman Dini-verse animated Batman movie. This is an impressive feat, considering she's also one of the Batwomen and has learned to fight in an identical fashion to her two, more obviously physically gifted, team-mates.
- There's actually a real-life psychological phenomenon similar to this known as the pratfall effect, where a person is likely to find an attractive person even more attractive if he/she makes a visible but harmless screw up.
- Jennifer Lawrence. From tripping on the stairs up to the stage while accepting her Oscar to flubbing Bill Clinton's name at the GLAAD Media Awards, she's as famous for her awkward public appearances as she is for her acting.
- Orlando Bloom seems to be the male equivalent, ironically enough. On-camera he's a good-looking, graceful man of action. Off-camera he's a total klutz.
- In going through their earlier growth spurts, younger teenagers are often clumsy since their minds don't have much time to catch up to their rapidly growing bodies, particularly the longer arms and legs.