Guns are like shoe lifts – they make you look taller

| April 13, 2012

The LA Times writes about a study funded by the Air Force that reports holding a gun makes men look two inches taller than someone holding a household tool;

In one round of the experiment involving 628 viewers, the researchers found that men whose hands held a .357-caliber handgun were thought to be almost 5 feet, 10 inches — more than 2 inches taller than men whose hands held a caulking gun.

Men with drills were also on the higher end of the height and strength scale — perhaps because of viewers’ estimates of the strength it would take to hold a drill — but they were still judged to be about half an inch shorter than the gun toters.

To make sure the viewers were not simply judging based on the weight of the objects, the researchers ran another test using a paintbrush, a kitchen knife and a squirt gun. Even though for some reason the viewers associated the kitchen knife more with women and the paintbrush more with men, the kitchen knife still made the holder seem bigger and stronger than either the paintbrush or the squirt gun did.

Of course, holding a gun in bar to make yourself look taller is called “brandishing” and it’s illegal even in concealed carry states, so you should go with Timberlands or cowboy boots instead.

Category: Guns

Comments (13)

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  1. Jack says:

    I carry everyday because of the line of work I am in, I’m a Forensic Scientist. Not exactally a LEO but still am associated with them. However I do not go looking for trouble. 99% of the time no one knows I’m even armed, but if trouble finds me I want to be able to defend myself.

  2. AliceH says:

    But how tall were they really? There wasn’t any mention of accuracy of estimates, or a control group. I didn’t read anything to suggest the headline couldn’t have been as accurately rendered as “viewers judged men holding household tools to be about 2″ shorter than empty handed men”. It could be something as simple as the mind being more focused and accurate when a potential threat is suggested. Doubt we’ll ever know from this study, though.

  3. Claymore says:

    Potentially off topic, but I find it hilarious that here in the state I live in, you have office workers for Pardons and Paroles who have been issued Glock 19’s, 23’s and 37’s. You can see admins and IT people standing around outside smoking cigarettes, wearing iron while the rest of state workers can’t even have a weapon in their car with or without a permit because the parking decks are “public property”.

  4. ARMYMP says:

    WTF is the Air Force wasting our money on a “study” like this? Really? Know what else makes you look taller? Not sitting behind a desk…

  5. Yat Yas 1833 says:

    By holding my .308 will it make me look 6′ 2″? When graduating recruit training Drill Instructor Sgt Allen said I looked like a “moss covered rock” in my Alphas!?

  6. Poohbah, Lord High Everything Else says:

    Once upon a time, someone pointed a .357 Magnum at me.

    The bore appeared to be a foot-plus across.

    Just sayin’.

  7. a175darby says:

    Being that I am 5’4, all be it a tall 5’4, I think carrying around a caulking gun is not what I really want to do. And I reckon a nice Wusthof Classic Heavy 14″ Chef’s Knife would tend to make a person look taller. Wonder how much a nice Stihl chainsaw adds to your height. And back to the knife, how did they hold it, mid height, chest height? Just another case of money that was better used for something other than this study.


  8. As a Copper, I’ve pointed guns at bad guys many times. A few shit their pants (which sucked putting them in the back of the patrol car)….and many would ask later: “Wow, what kind of gun do you carry,it looked really big.”
    I just told them it was because they had a small dick.

  9. Hondo says:

    Poobah: I hear ya. Staring down a gun barrel does have a way of getting yer attention.

  10. a175darby says:

    @6 Yepper on the bore appearence!

  11. Eric says:

    @4 I’m with you. We are making veteran’s pay more money for health care, but we’re funding studies on guns making people seem taller?

  12. I will testify that Lilyea looks taller when he has a .45 in close proximity. Still cute, mind you… just taller.

  13. Bobby says:

    haha… well since a gun is out of the question in my town… shoe lifts works for me..

    got a pair from and this is my opinion..

    it is by far one of the best investments i’ve made.. actually get eyed at much longer by the ladies.. call me selfish but i wear them daily now..