Woman with 16-inch waist aspires to have smallest waist in the world

Ms Michele Koebke, 25, from Berlin, Germany, has a waist so tiny, most people would think her photos have been digitally altered.

In 2013, she achieved a 16-inch (40.1cm) waist while wearing a corset. Her waist measured 21 inches without wearing one.

Medical Daily reported that Ms Koebke started to bind her 25-inch waist by tight-lacing it in a corset at the end of 2009.

She has reportedly worn her corset everyday for more than three years, and only takes it off when she showers.

Ms Koebke's tiny waist is achieved through tight-lacing, a practice in which corset enthusiasts lace their corsets increasingly tighter to get drastically-clinched waists.

NY Daily News reported that Ms Koebke records her tight-lacing progress on her Facebook page and in Youtube videos to share with friends and fans.

A doctor has also found that she is suffering slight muscle atrophy from wearing the contraption for a prolonged period of time.

Medical experts warn that wearing corsets tightly continually will restrict a person's breathing, damage skin and even bruise internal organs.

Although Ms Koebke's family disapproves of her unhealthy habit, she is determined to earn the title of person with the smallest waist, a record currently held by Ms Cathie Jung from USA.

Ms Jung, who is 1.72 metres tall, has a waist measuring 15 inches in a corset, and 21 inches out of one.

In an interview with The Huffington Post, Koebke said: "I can bind (my waist) down to 16 inches. I want to get to 14.9 inches."

minlee@sph.com.sg