Why do people pace while talking?

19 Oct

Seeing my little cousin pace the floor while she’s on the phone makes me wonder what causes it. Is she nervous or excited about the
conversation she’s having? She paces during every telephone call she has which poses the question is it just because she is receiving information or telling information that wasn’t known by the other person. People have brought up the question to why people pace but it seems as if no one knows the real reasoning behind it.

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4 Responses to “Why do people pace while talking?”

  1. slh93 October 22, 2011 at 8:44 pm #

    I’ve never thought about this before. I never tend to pace while I’m on the phone, but I know many people that “have” to pace while they’re on the phone. I wonder what the cause of it is, anxiousness? Not being able to sit still?

  2. dylanscott15 October 23, 2011 at 2:31 pm #

    This could be an interesting experiment, depending on the independent variable you used. One possibility would be to use the subject matter of the conversation as an IV, and test to see if people pace more during an especially important conversation. Alternately, you could test to see if there is a correlation between the subjects’ background (nationality, economic class, etc) and distance paced. Perhaps it is something about the way a person was raised that causes some people to pace more than others.

  3. asopko22 October 23, 2011 at 4:30 pm #

    I pace all the time while I am on the phone. I really pace when I am on the phone with someone important or when I am on the phone with a friend and we are telling jokes and things back and forth. I believe you pace to try to keep your nerves down, or when talking to a friend you do it to keep busy and to keep your mind in the conversation.

  4. annaneighbor October 23, 2011 at 5:38 pm #

    This is a really interesting question! How would you conduct the experiment? I was thinking you could get people to take two different, pre-recorded calls that each induce one of the emotions you mentioned- anxiety and excitement. Then you would be able to see whether they pace during either of the calls.

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