May 4 - Petite and Proud Day

Posted on May 4, 2020

Tall = good. Tall is healthy, beautiful, statuesque, model-esque.

So...does that mean that short = bad?

Of course not! People who are short can be just as healthy, beautiful, talented, and successful as people who are tall.

North Korean people tend to be shorter
than South Korean people - and way
shorter than American people -
apparently because of lack of
adequate food.
One reason that height is sometimes linked with health is that people's growth CAN be stunted by a lack of nutrients during childhood or by certain kinds of illnesses. However, in general, short people are short because of inherited traits - in other words, their parents were fairly short, as were their grandparents, etc.! 

Here are some of the advantages of being short:

Really successful jockeys tend to be short. Horses speeding around a track do better with lighter-weight riders! Most jockeys are under 5 feet 6 inches tall; some are under 5 feet flat! In contrast, the average American man is around 5-foot-10. 

Yuri Gagarin
Early cosmonauts were short; every ounce of weight drives up the need for fuel to boost a spaceship off the Earth's surface and into orbit, so the USSR built Sputnik with only a small, cramped space for the human pilot! The first human to journey into outer space was Yuri Gagarin, and he was just 5 feet 2 inches tall.

(NASA had a height limit of 5-foot-11 for its early astronauts. Now its limit is 6 - 4.)

Simone Biles
The shorter a gymnast is, the better - at least for his or her gymnastics! A short gymnast has a better power-to-weight ratio AND a lower moment of inertia, which just means that it's a lot easier for a gymnast to spin and rotate a short body.

Simone Biles
The average elite female gymnast of today is only 4 feet 9 inches tall. And Simone Biles, the most elite of all, is an inch shorter than the average!

In addition to the benefits of being short in certain professions, short people generally enjoy several health benefits. They are less likely to develop cancer or blood clots, they are at lower risk for heat exhaustion or sun stroke, and they statistically live longer.

Short people may not be able to reach things off high shelves as easily, but they may be better at low-shelf stuff. Short people can fit into smaller spots and are more comfortable in low-ceilinged rooms and tunnels and in cramped seating situations. Leg room, leg room, leg room!

Short people often look younger, and others tend to be less intimidated by and even to help short people more than tall people. Short people are usually given prime spots - in front - in group pics, and although it's harder for them to stand out in crowds, it's easier to escape the sun - as the taller folks all around often shade them.

Short people can add height, if they want, by wearing heels or platform shoes. Short speakers can just stand on a box behind the podium! Tall people stooping looks way worse than short people in heels!

Today, if you are short (or short-for-your-age), consider all the positives and carry on!

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