Walking around campus with their heads bent, students tap away on their phones. They are nearly bumping into people or poles, strolling off the sidewalk or into the road. You’ve seen one or been one: a distracted walker.
However, some students would not consider themselves at risk.
“It never [hurt me] before but I guess it could if I’m not paying attention,” said student Claire Cowan. “I’m not usually in a hurry, but I probably don’t walk as fast when I’m texting because I’m concentrating on something else.”
Cowan said because she hasn’t been in any mishap, it is not an issue for her.
But texting while walking has been proven to be a danger to pedestrians.
A recent study by Ohio State University shows injuries involving cellphone use while walking more than doubled between 2005 and 2010. People ages 16 to 25 are most at risk for cellphone related injuries while walking.
Texting while walking averts the eyes from the surrounding world. But it also affects the full body.
Researchers at the University of Queensland in Australia found that texting while walking significantly altered a person’s body motion and posture.
Those texting while walking began to walk rigidly with stiff neck and back movements, took shorter steps, slowed down and deviated away from a straight line. They had a harder time keeping balance and didn’t pay as much attention to surroundings.