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Posted by on Oct 28, 2015 in Tell Me Why |

Is It Natural to Swing Your Arms When Walking?

Is It Natural to Swing Your Arms When Walking?

For a long time, scientists thought that swinging your arms while walking served no purpose. Their best guess was that it was just some sort of evolutionary afterthought that we just never got rid of. After all, you don’t have to move your arms to move your legs. So why do it?

Recently, scientists have completed more advanced research on the issue and discovered that swinging your arms while walking definitely does have a purpose. Like many other bodily functions, it occurs because it’s the most natural and efficient way to walk. In other words, swinging your arms while you walk helps to reduce the total amount of energy it takes to walk.

Researchers found that normal arm swinging actually doesn’t use much energy from the arm muscles. Simply walking causes the body to sway in a way that makes the arms move naturally, like a pendulum.

So when you walk, your arms begin to swing naturally without much effort from your arm muscles. The natural movement of your arms also helps to offset a part of the force caused by your legs hitting the ground, keeping your torso and hips from wobbling and twisting too much. This results in your legs using less energy!

Content for this question contributed by Debra Bell, resident of Fort Wright, Kenton County, Kentucky, USA