Women's Health South Africa
CONTROL YOUR INNER KLUTZ Image Credit: Women's Health South Africa
CONTROL YOUR INNER KLUTZ Image Credit: Women's Health South Africa

Control Your Inner Klutz

Writer Leslie Goldman’s life has been a blooper reel of slips and spills. Fear not. There’s hope at the end of her – and your – black-and-blue rainbow.

Have you ever set your wrist on fire by knocking a candle into bed during sex? Or concussed yourself by careening your bicycle into a letterbox? Well, I have. Because I (thwacks self in eye while fluffing cape) am Clumsy Girl.

Recently, after falling off the couch for no reason (again), I began to wonder: why am I the opposite of what Ludacris rapped about – a lady in the bed but a freak in the streets?

Clumsiness is basically “a mismatch between your intended movement and the movement you actually make,” says psychologist Emily Bloesch who studies hand-eye coordination. It worsens with age (ugh) and some of us may be hard-wired to take spills. One in every 29 people has a 50 percent greater chance of experiencing an accident requiring medical attention, according to the journal Accident Analysis & Prevention.

What makes someone like me that unlucky 1 in 29? “We all have a bubble, a sense of personal space that usually extends as far as you can reach your arms,” Bloesch explains. When something (say, an overhead baggage compartment) enters your bubble, areas of the brain that tell it to pay extra attention are signalled. But for unknown reasons, some people are just lousier at bubble monitoring.

Well, stumble sisters, take heart. These strategies can help you flop (and fall and bump) less.


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