Why Do We Swing Our Arms Back and Forth While Walking?

Walking is an everyday activity for humans. Most of the time, we walk when going to the store, playing sports, going to the movies, shopping in the mall, and many other activities that involve walking. From the day our parents taught us how to walk, until now, walking is a part of our lives.

Furthermore, walking has several health benefits, which is why health specialists recommend it as a form of exercise. Walking thirty minutes a day is recommendable for us to improve our health and avoid various health conditions. That is why walking is not just an activity, but it is an essential part of our daily lives.

However, in several years of walking, have you ever notice that our arms swing back and forth while walking? We may not be aware of it, but we tend to swing our arms while walking. By doing so, it always seems reasonable and does not exert much effort. Every step that we make, the opposite arm will swing, and so on.

So with this said, let us ask, what is the reason why do we swing our arms while walking? Is there any specific reason why we make this motion? Is it fine not to move our arms while walking?

If we come to think of it, we may come across these questions out of curiosity. As useless as it seems, knowing the reason behind it would not make us better at walking, but it would add to our knowledge and could be a piece of valuable information. Since that we recommended walking and provided some of its health benefits, let us now dig deeper further in the article.

What is the purpose of swinging our arms while walking?

As mentioned earlier, swinging our arms while walking is natural, and it is so natural that we don’t even recognize ourselves swinging our arms back and forth while walking. Because of the naturality, early scientists claim that arm swinging doesn’t have any specific purpose, and it is a merely useless habit that people unconsciously do while walking.

However, after years of research, scientists discovered that swinging the arms while walking is not just a habit or an unconscious movement, and the swinging of the arms has a purpose.

Since it does seem natural walking while swinging the arms, its primary purpose is to reduce the amount of energy consumed while walking. Meaning to say, swinging the arms is the most efficient way to walk, as it doesn’t take up much energy.

To better elaborate on this concept, scientists conducted various tests from several people. They provided specific instructions to these peoples, like to walk while naturally swinging their arms, sticking them on their sides, or swinging the arms in the same manner with the legs. The studies show that swinging our arms indeed is an essential activity. It is apparent in the results that people who don’t swing their arms while walking use twelve percent more energy than those who normally swing their arms. While those who synchronously swung their arms with their legs produced outstanding results,  it used twenty-six percent more energy than those who naturally walk.

With all of these studies, it is safe to say that the swinging of arms is essential while walking. As mentioned earlier, this motion helps us to conserve our body energy while walking. Also, it helps us to balance our body and acts as a pendulum for our body to be more stable while walking. Because without swinging the arms, it would be difficult for us to maintain balance while walking.

The natural way of walking is a lot more convenient for us, especially during our morning workout. If you go on a morning walk, try to perform the other ways of walking like the earlier examples, and compare the difference from when you are walking normally. This way, you can see and feel the significant difference between the other unnatural ways of walking. Without swinging the arms normally, you will feel more tired, as well as experience slight body pain. So without any further explanation, swinging the arms is the proper way for us to walk.