Does puberty exactly follow the development sequences in the Tanner Stages?

Last updated on September 17, 2020


Does puberty exactly follow the development sequences in the Tanner Stages? Okay, I know it doesn’t exactly follow, but I happened to notice that my voice started to crack just when I started puberty and finished deepening just right before I got into stage 3. And when I was starting stage 4, my structure looked as if I was only starting stage 3. I am more or less in stage 4.5 right now, by the way. I’m asking about this because I want to know some of my characteristics may be done developing, but insufficiently developed. Or rather if my body is breaking the order of development. I can be patient, but I have to be assured that I am not waiting for what is done already.


The reason I ask so many questions in the calculator is that there are numerous systems in the body and the individual systems develop in a fairly fixed order, but the order between the systems might be going at a different pace. Thus, there is an order to

  • body development: hands and feet, legs and arms, and then trunk and shoulders.
  • body hair: legs and arms, groin, armpits, lower abdomen, chest, back.
  • pubic hair: starting at the base of the penis and spreading outward. Starting thin and straight, then getting thicker and curlier.
  • facial hair: upper lip, chin, sideburns, jaw, and then cheeks

For most boys, the chains of development sequences line up, but it doesn’t for everyone. The order within each sequence is fairly fixed, but not absolutely. Between the systems, it is even looser. I remember one boy whose first sign of puberty was hair on his back. That you started with a voice change is not common, but it can happen. This is why I cover all the secondary characteristics that can be seen or measured and then combine the results.