The decision to stand up was one of the – if not the – most influential in the course of our development. It freed our hands to do a whole range of things that we could not do before and set the stage for all events in so-called “human history”.
It’s also a unique trait, as no other animal – before or after – has ever found that walking on two feet instead of four can unlock a whole world of complex tools, larger brains, and, ultimately, complex civilization. While bipedalism has always existed in one form or another – from dinosaurs to intelligent monkeys ̵
Whatever the reason for standing upright has finally changed our evolutionary blueprint and for worse. It may have given us our hands free to make complex tools and produce all of human civilization, but it has also sentenced us to a life full of problems that we have never had before. Problems like …
There is no doubt that walking on two feet has vastly improved our overall health. Due to the constant development of complex medical instruments in our history, we can now treat a variety of diseases that we could not even dream of before. The average person is much healthier than any of the intelligent monkeys, which is directly due to our decision to walk.
On the other hand, however, there were a number of health problems that were unlikely to ever go away. One of them is hemorrhoids, which is so common that about half of all people have some form of it at the time they live 50.
While most of them would assume that this is a normal evolution problem, it really is not. It is a direct result of that abnormal Pressure that is exerted by the upright structure of the body and is just one of the many digestive diseases that we have to deal with when we walk on two legs.
7. Back pain and other spinal problems
The digestive system is hardly the only health victim of the bipedal era, if we could call it that. Another health problem that we’ve never had before is back pain.
According to some estimates 65 million It is reported that back problems have been seen recently in America alone. It is even more striking that 16 million of them – around 8% of the total population – suffer from chronic back problems, so that they cannot even perform everyday tasks.
The question arises: have we ever done anything to deserve this?
The fast answer? Yes. The evolutionary decision to stand on two legs literally gave us some irreplaceable tools to climb the evolutionary hierarchy, although this also made our backs much more vulnerable injurybecause this is not our natural state of being. Almost everyone who reads this will have back pain at least once in their life, and you can thank Bipedalism for it.
6. It’s too much work
Most problems related to bipedalism arise because our body is simply not used to the new lifestyle. While some would say that four million years is enough time to adapt to the new order, it doesn’t take long at all on an evolutionary level.
Because of this, it is still necessary to walk on two legs consistent attention from many important parts of our body to consume energy that could be better used elsewhere. All of our senses must work together to support our upright posture. The muscles constantly adapt to the strange weight distribution. All of this information flows into maintaining orientation and balance when we get up, as our bodies are still not instinctively used to it.
5. We have lost our opposite toes
If we count all the great things that we have been able to accomplish because of our decision to stand up, we will likely run out of space soon. Freeing our hands to create tools gave our brain an unprecedented cognitive boost as different tasks required different levels of skill. It allowed our bodies to develop efficient ways to use the extra energy that is released when walking on all fours. This allowed us to hunt much better and exercise power longer than any living predator. The list goes on.
Of course, we also had to give up some amazing skills to say that, especially our opponent’s toe. That’s right, much like opposing thumbs, prehuman and monkeys were opposing Toes, too. Of course, they still weren’t up to the ridiculously versatile functions of the opposite thumbs, but they still gave us some pretty cool skills, like just climbing trees. When we lost our ability – and our will – to walk on four limbs, the opposite toes gradually became obsolete and eventually disappeared from our species.
4. It made it easier for us to be discovered by predators
Of course, it’s no news that bipedalism has proven beneficial in light of what we’ve achieved as a species since then. Whole books have been written about why this was an irreplaceable turning point in our development, and rightly so. The problem, however, is that we can only say all of this in retrospect. Although we know that bipedalism has generally proven to be good for us over time, its immediate benefits are not so clear to early people.
The brightest disadvantage If you walk on two legs in a world full of predators, you will become unnecessarily visible on the grass, which seems to be a clear disadvantage. It would have made early humans much more vulnerable to animal attacks and raised a general question as to why we developed this ability in the first place.
3. It made us more susceptible to foot injuries
Similar to our back, our feet are particularly prone to injury. This is reflected in how easy it is to turn our ankles for normal, everyday things. One wonders: Do animals go through this too? Do monkeys like us always turn their feet when they run around in the jungle?
While we need data to definitely say that this is not the case, science suggests that this is not a problem for any other animal, and there is a good reason for it. While we gave up our four-legged lifestyle, ours was Feet could not develop so quickly and still contain traces of flexible muscles and ligaments from this time. Apart from the fact that the function of the feet is now limited to being a rigid support base for the heavy standing structure of the body. Obviously, it fails regularly because it is still a bendable, movable member that can turn and turn in a way that it no longer needs.
2. Our exceptionally high pain in labor
Have you ever looked at the animal kingdom and noticed a strange but stark difference? Animals that are about to be born do not appear to be in pain or discomfort at all unless the delivery does not go according to schedule. Usually most animals give birth to babies as if it were a normal part of their day, although it is not the same for us. Ask anyone who has gone through the whole process and they will tell you everything about how it is one of the worst types of pain you can go through. So what is there?
As you suspected, the answer is Bipedalism. The exceptionally high pain we experience during childbirth is a direct result of our evolutionary decision to stand on two legs, as our pelvis had to become narrower to absorb it. This is helpful in many ways, but it also makes the birth of our women considerably more difficult.
1. It slowed us down
When it comes to speed, humans are worse off than most animals we know. Even the most docile herbivores around us can run faster than us, even if we’re supposed to be the top species on the planet. While standing upright on two legs, we had many tools to manage our energy efficiently – such as the extraordinary ability to cool off during physical exertion – by giving up just giving up speed and agility.
Thanks to this, humans are perhaps one of the slowest mammals on the planet. Of course, no one can say that modern humans don’t need speed to increase their chances of survival, although this doesn’t apply to the earliest bipedal humans. At that time, the lower speed would have been a clear disadvantage, as the ability to run away from dangerous predators was still one of the few ways we could survive and reproduce.
Other items you might like