At 190 cm I too have more difficulty flying economy on most airlines. The airlines, to maximize profits, have reduced seat pitch from 10-12 cm over the past decade or so, and seat width by up to 30 cm. Sadly, unlike many of my age peers, I've not lost any height, although the same can't be said of my width.
I always ask the person behind me if I may recline my seat once the seat belt light is out; that courtesy alone does wonders. It allows the other passenger to "rearrange" themselves and more often than not they oblige. When asked in advance, it also allows the other passenger to object and explain why they would prefer that I not recline.
I am an American, I have traveled extensively on international flights, and I've not noticed any one nationality being more or less troublesome. I have noticed however that nearly everyone agrees that the airlines have done their damndest to make flying an uncomfortable experience for all passengers.