Wednesday, August 23, 2017
Contact us    |    Advertise    |   Help   RSS icon Twitter icon Facebook icon
    Home  ·  News  ·  Forum  ·  Stories  ·  Image Gallery  ·  Columns  ·  Encyclopedia  ·  Videos
Find: in
This news story is archived which means that, while it is still available to view, the information contained within may be outdated and the original source site/link may no longer be viewable.

For the most recent stories, please visit either the site's home page or main news section.

Why did our ancestors start walking upright ?

Posted on Saturday, 25 May, 2013 | Comment icon 45 comments | News tip by: DieChecker


Image credit: CC 2.0 possan

 
What was it that lead our distant ancestors to move from walking on four legs to walking on two ?

One of the most prevailing theories concerns changes in the climate up to 2.5 million years ago which lead to the demise of large swaths of forest in Africa. As the trees made way for open savannah, it is believed, our ancestors adapted by developing the ability to walk upright. Now however this theory has been challenged by a team of archaeologists who have suggested the change was brought about not by climate change but by geology.

Volcanic activity and shifting tectonic plates in Africa at the time could have produced uneven terrain, deep gorges and other obstacles that favor bipedalism. "The broken, disrupted terrain offered benefits for hominins in terms of security and food, but it also proved a motivation to improve their locomotor skills by climbing, balancing, scrambling and moving swiftly over broken ground - types of movement encouraging a more upright gait," said study co-author Isabelle Winder.

"Being four-legged has its perks. As a quadruped, your center of gravity is lower, there's less wind resistance when you're running, and, best of all, you can use your hind foot to scratch your ear."

  View: Full article

 Source: Christian Science Monitor


  Discuss: View comments (45)

   


 
Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #36 Posted by Maz1 on 26 May, 2013, 21:10
There was a documentary 10 years ago which said that one of the reason we are bipedal is to conserve our energy for sex. *Goes back to my little hole*
Comment icon #37 Posted by bigjonalien on 26 May, 2013, 23:06
I'd like to know why we weren't born with four arms and two hearts?
Comment icon #38 Posted by DieChecker on 26 May, 2013, 23:06
Gorillas and Chimps walk tripod when carrying or dragging something. Those apes mostly have one baby at a time. Now imagine a sub-species of chimp that had two or more babies at a time... They'd need both hands to carry their babies.
Comment icon #39 Posted by Skithia on 27 May, 2013, 10:38
I am not going to waste my time trying to explain to yourselves.Your dual identities explain it all.Your explanations are not sufficient enough to me to warrant my explaining myself to you.Just get on with it all & accept the whole biblical truth. Why?
Comment icon #40 Posted by Abramelin on 27 May, 2013, 15:21
Why did our ancestors start walking upright? Maybe their knees started hurting:
Comment icon #41 Posted by Frank Merton on 27 May, 2013, 15:27
From the picture it is obvious we are not designed to walk on all fours. The thing is, we are descended from animals that were. Hence morning backache.
Comment icon #42 Posted by PersonFromPorlock on 27 May, 2013, 15:55
this makes me wonder.. what was in his other hand? Paperwork. It started early.
Comment icon #43 Posted by starchild1976 on 30 May, 2013, 6:39
It was to help the chicken cross the road.
Comment icon #44 Posted by Artaxerxes on 7 August, 2013, 3:37
It takes less energy to walk bi-pedal on two legs than it does on four legs. It's as simple as that. Food/energy/calories were at a premium and our ancestors had to save energy any way they could. They had to go further to feed and it was cheaper energy wise to walk on two legs than on four.
Comment icon #45 Posted by SkepticalB on 7 August, 2013, 5:21
I always assumed it was so they could learn to strut


Please Login or Register to post a comment.


  On the forums
Forum posts:
Forum topics:
Members:

5972064
257027
168909

 
'Orange UFO' sighted over Somerset, England
8-22-2017
The peculiar aerial phenomenon was captured on camera by Jeremy Le Fevre on Saturday evening.
Plasma heating method offers fusion boost
8-22-2017
Scientists have developed a new way of heating fusion plasmas inside tokamak nuclear fusion reactors.
What did the eclipse look like from space ?
8-22-2017
NASA and other agencies have been posting up photographs and videos of yesterday's total solar eclipse.
Mystery microbe may be key to origin of viruses
8-21-2017
The microorganism was discovered in the lakes of the Rauer Islands off the coast of Antarctica.
Other news in this category
'Frankenstein dinosaur' is 'missing link'
Posted 8-16-2017 | 0 comments
The mystery surrounding a dinosaur made up of various mismatched body parts has finally been solved....
 
13 million-year-old human ancestor unearthed
Posted 8-10-2017 | 27 comments
Palaeontologists have discovered the skull of what is thought to be mankind's earliest known ancestor....
 
World's largest ever dinosaur identified
Posted 8-9-2017 | 0 comments
A 70-ton titanosaur has been officially established as the largest land animal ever to walk the Earth....
 
Heavily armored dinosaurs also had camouflage
Posted 8-5-2017 | 21 comments
Dinosaurs equipped with spikes and bony plates may have also employed camouflage to avoid predators....
 
Could a human actually outrun a T. rex ?
Posted 7-17-2017 | 17 comments
Contrary to the plot of Jurassic Park, a rampaging Tyrannosaurus rex wouldn't actually move very fast....
 
Giant prehistoric crocodile had T. rex teeth
Posted 7-4-2017 | 2 comments
Palaeontologists have been studying the remains of a crocodile-like land predator from the Jurassic era....
 
Intense volcanism gave rise to the dinosaurs
Posted 6-20-2017 | 5 comments
A mass extinction event 200 million years ago made it possible for the dinosaurs to dominate the planet....
 
T. rex did not have feathers, say scientists
Posted 6-10-2017 | 16 comments
The idea that Tyrannosaurus rex had a thick plumage of feathers has been called in to serious doubt....
 
Ancient fossil bird found trapped in amber
Posted 6-9-2017 | 1 comment
The incredibly well-preserved hatchling is believed to date back 99 million years to the Cretaceous Era....
 
Earliest Homo sapiens unearthed in Morocco
Posted 6-8-2017 | 8 comments
The discovery casts doubt on the idea that modern humans evolved in a single 'cradle of humanity'....
 
Giant prehistoric sloth unearthed in LA metro
Posted 6-3-2017 | 4 comments
A recent excavation in the heart of Los Angeles has yielded evidence of giant prehistoric beasts....
 

 View: More news in this category
 
Top   |  Home   |   Forum   |   News   |   Image Gallery   |  Columns   |   Encyclopedia   |   Videos   |   Polls
UM-X 10.7 Unexplained-Mysteries.com 2001-2017
Privacy Policy and Disclaimer   |   Cookies   |   Advertise   |   Contact   |   Help/FAQ