It doesn’t need a grey matter megamind to comprehend that if your eyes are glued to a phone’s screen while walking in an alleyway, or a road, or basically any kind of path, you just might run into an obstacle and suffer a nasty fall. The Lord gave us eyes so that we can see, avoid barriers, and walk around them without hurting our delicate toes.

But one neuroscientist at the University of New South Wales took it upon himself to find if texting really was dangerous while walking. The research, citing motion data from multiple body sensors, says even if a texting person made an effort to stay cautious while knowing the danger, it did not effectively protect them from the potential of falling.

It seems that being aware of the threat does not necessarily translate into avoiding the risk. So much for multitasking, huh?

A woman headed towards a large stone while texting.
Credit: Bing Image Creator

But here’s the fun part. If you’re texting while walking, the accuracy of what you type also decreases. This was observed when the test subjects were asked to type a sentence as simple as “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.”

So yeah, if you are planning to write a sob letter to win back your demonic forest-dwelling goth ex, or a college application, you better sit and type it well. In fact, the experiment also proved that typing accuracy is best when your ass is seated comfortably.

Here’s the nerdy stuff in brief, straight from the experts’ vocal cavity:

“Brodie and co-author Yoshiro Okubo invented a tiled hazard walkway at Neuroscience Research Australia’s gait laboratory, which halfway through had a tile that could be adjusted to slide out of place, so anyone who stepped on it would slip as if on a banana peel. Students wore a safety harness—preventing any slip from becoming a fall—and sensors that collected their motion data. “

If you’re really that one smart-ass in your friend circle, find the research paper here in the Heliyon journal. And below is a re-enactment of the whole thing on a video:

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