Physical development refers to the growth and development of body parts to make the body have the ability to perform certain functions for certain skills. Physical development includes large muscle movements as well as small movements. It involves the changes in the body, brain, motor skills, senses, and the wellness of an individual. During adolescence, several physical changes occur.

Characteristics of Physical Development during Adolescence

The characteristics of physical development during adolescence are as follows:

Rapid Physical Growth

During adolescence, individuals develop physical maturity. In this period, a growth spurt occurs. There may be rapid physical growth and development which may not be proportional.

Occurrence of Puberty

Adolescence is the stage when puberty occurs. Boys and girls may see a growth in their bodies and facial hair.

Physical Changes

Adolescence is the period when the skin starts changing and pimples may start occurring. Boys may also witness their voices deepen.

Development of Body Parts

During adolescence, girls start developing breasts and menstruation begins. Boys witness an increase in testosterone while girls witness an increase in estrogen.

Height and Weight Growth

Adolescents may see a growth in their height and weight. Some parts of the body may grow and develop faster than the others due to which the growth during adolescence may not always be proportional.

Self Conscious

During adolescence, individuals become highly self-conscious due to rapid physical changes. They start paying a lot of attention to their appearance.

Development of Sex Glands

During adolescence, individuals start developing sex glands. Sometimes, they may be hyperactive while sometimes, they may feel lethargic.


Adolescence is a period of rapid physical growth and there are physical changes in terms of both height and weight. The growth during this period may not be proportional. Sex glands or reproductive organs start functioning. Teachers should be able to give learners a scientific explanation behind this growth and rapid physical changes to help them understand these baffling changes.