Why Do Fat People Waddle When They Walk? How To Correct It?

Why Do The Fat People Waddle

Being overweight not only means that you will become a bit plump and struggle to find the correct size of clothes. However, weight gain brings a list of abnormalities that can change your entire physical features, posture, and health and it can even influence the way you perform your daily task or walk around. Normally, people are more concerned about the health struggles associated with obesity as it really takes a toll on people as a carrier of diabetes, kidney struggles, heart disease, and the like. 

You must have noticed that fat people are more likely to waddle rather than just walk. Obviously, the way you move around or do habitual actions are closely linked to your total body weight, but there is a lot more you should be aware of if you are concerned about your health and fitness to correct yourself from this gait. 

Fat People And Waddling

In case you wonder why fat people waddle, it is easily identified as the body’s struggle to adapt to the extra weight while trying to keep the balance. Anatomically, the human body is composed of complex hinges and joints of flesh and bone, these parts are essential to keep your overall body balance and body control and make your movement struggle free. Apparently, there is also a limit to the capacity in which each of your joints can carry the weight. While the body abnormally gains more weight, you will start to take shorter and wider strides, and the movement will be comparatively slower. 

In shorter words, the excess fat in your body can ruin your posture and the equilibrium that it requires to engage in physical activities. Besides the excess load from your weight brings extra pressure, so to prevent wear and tear, the body will adapt to subtle changes in the way you walk, making you waddle while walking. 

Fat People And Waddling

The worst part of this condition occurs when you will not notice a thing or difference in your movement, but gradually, as you gain even more fat, you will feel it quite difficult to make every step. Other than obese people, laborers who carry a lot of weight every day also tend to waddle as the cartilage and fluid in their joints get depleted sooner. 

How Do People Walk Normally?

Unlike other creatures, we walk on two legs, which is one of the most important ways that we are unique. Normally, within the first year of your birth itself, you will start to walk on your legs and it is instinctive. Even if it looks simple from a distance, it is truly incredible to see the mechanism behind it. To walk correctly, the balance of a number of mechanisms and forces are essential. It is a combination of the stance phase and swing phase in which the first refers to when you are in an upright position carrying your entire weight in one of your legs. The latter refers to the movement which begins right after your toes are pushed off the ground making a swing with your leg. 

You might like to read: Choosing The Right Shoes While Walking

What Is Waddling Gait?

Gait is referred to your walking style or the combination of limb movements that lets you walk. If you are hit with any abnormality that makes you struggle to walk, this condition is called abnormal gait. These abnormalities include Propulsive gait, Scissors gait, Spastic gait, steppage gait, and waddling gait.  

Among these, waddling gait often comes with obesity as it signifies the movement of the body from side to side while walking. At the same time, your body tends to swing in this gait while making you make slower and shorter steps. 

Why Do Fat People Have A Waddling Gait?

Most prominently, fat people have less room between their limbs when they stand up and walk. Besides, their extra busy weight brings immense pressure between their joints, so they naturally keep their legs apart while walking.

Here are some of the other reasons that make fat people waddle while walking. 

#1 Limitations in movement

As you know, the thighs are one of the major parts of our body in which fat tends to get deposited bulkily. So, the flab in both of your thighs makes them struggle to come close to each other while walking. This way, they lose their body’s alignment to walk straight, as fat people’s leg muscles are slightly off the regular position while they walk. Eventually, the gap between their thigh muscles and quadriceps makes their legs wide apart, reducing the range of their leg’s motion and creating a curve in the trajectory of the legs. 

#2 Their large body

The larger your body becomes, the greater you are likely to waddle. As you gain fat, you will not notice any change in the way you walk around since the curve in the trajectory of your leg movement would be minor. But, as time flies and you put on more weight, this curve would expand, and make the abnormality visible. Even babies when they learn to walk show this kind of movement as per their total body weight. 

#3 Immobility

Once you put on extremely more weight, you will experience more waddling as your joints start to become stiff. The extra weight in your body will make your joints inflexible and you will literally feel it is a task to take even a few steps. 

#4 Fragile muscles

Since lack of movement leads to fat gain and obesity, your leg muscles will get weaker when they get surrounded by fat deposits. Once the leg muscles start to lose their strength, you will not feel any ease in movement and your legs will struggle to carry your body weight, staying wide apart leading to a waddling gait.  

Fat People Have A Waddling Gait

#5 Symmetrical instability

Symmetrical instability is the peak situation in which you will totally become helpless as waddling becomes an inevitable part. In this stage, you will become symmetrically unstable since your body’s center of gravity alters. So, in case you gain more weight, it will be difficult for the legs to carry your weight and you get forced to use the momentum of the sidespin to keep your balance and walk forward.

How To Correct Obesity-Related Waddling Gait?

If you waddle or have any abnormality associated with obesity, you can indeed correct it. But all you want to do is to tackle obesity through proper planning and practice.

Here are a few tips that you can truly follow to rectify your walking style and posture. 

✅ If necessary, use support

To get the right balance while you walk, you can use a stick or cane since it will force you to walk in a straight line instead of moving in a circular way. In this case, a quad case is ideal as it will carry a portion of your weight. If you are afraid that the support will become an inevitable part of your life, or you become totally dependent, you don’t have to worry, since it will gradually improve your posture when you practice walking with and without the support. 

✅ Move often 

Let it be exercise or other physical activity, you need to involve your legs in the movement since it is essential to improve their strength, flexibility, and gait. It’s not for making your legs slim, but most importantly to provide the strength they must possess as you gain more weight. To make it clear, you need to engage in more physical activities involving both of your legs regularly, so that you will not lose the strength that they need to let you walk with ease. 

✅ If possible, shed some pounds. 

Since the fat deposits between your thighs make it quite challenging to walk normally, the best way in which you can prevent waddling is by shedding them off. To succeed in this, you need to have a customized weight loss plan, which comprises improving your eating habits, an exercise regimen, and overall a weight loss support lifestyle. Hiring a therapist or a professional fitness trainer is also the best way you can go back to shape, as it will help you get the exact instructions and suggestions according to your capacity. 

If you are serious about the idea of shedding extra pounds from your body, you can also adapt to the following changes in lifestyle.

These tips not only would benefit your weight loss journey but your general well-being as well. 

  • Cut off the junk and processed foods from your menu
  • Reduce sugar intake 
  • Hydrate your body well
  • Add more protein to your diet
  • Utilize cardio workouts and weight training 
  • Move around 
  • Limit your daily calories 

Final Thoughts 

There are several reasons why fat people waddle while walking. As you gain more weight, you tend to lose the balance and strength of your body, especially that of both of your legs. This leads to many commonly unnoticed or underestimated struggles. and waddling is one of them. Even if it seems irreversible, experts suggest that it can be rectified, if you are ready to follow certain tips, such as diet, exercise, and lifestyle changes. However, you can only rectify your abnormal gait if it is associated with obesity or other factors. But if you waddle because of genetic issues, or permanent injury, you would rather require medical help than a personal fitness trainer.

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