Tags: texting | walking | gait

Texting Changes How People Walk

Friday, 31 July 2015 04:23 PM

Texting while walking can change your gait. That’s the upshot of new Texas A&M University research published in the Public Library of Science journal PLOS ONE.

People regularly text on a mobile phone while walking city sidewalks tend to walk more slowly and erratically, the researchers found, Science Daily reports.

The findings are based on an experiment involving 30 who completed three randomized, walking tasks through an obstacle course while walking normally, texting and walking, and texting and walking while being distracted with a math test.

The results showed participants took significantly longer to complete the course while texting and being distracted compared to just walking. Texting while being distracted also decreased the ability to walk in a straight line.

Lead research Conrad Earnest suggested walking texters engage in what they called a characteristic “protective shuffle” that has apparently evolved to protect users from banging into other people or objects in their environment.

Hospital emergency departments treat about 1,000 people a year with texting-while-walking related injuries, experts say.

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Texting while walking can change your gait, according to new research.
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Friday, 31 July 2015 04:23 PM
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