WHEN AND HOW WAS WALKING INVENTED?
This is a very important question for anthropologists owing to bipedalism’s meaning walking on two legs being among the principal defining characteristics of hominins, or modern humans, and their ancestors. It is hard to tell yes or no, given that, in reality, bipedalism did not just appear one day. It evolved over millions of years.
Of course, the Romans don’t possess any video clips of the first individual ever to walk upright. How do scientists attempt to discover answers to questions about how people moved in the very distant past? Thankfully, the shape of a creature’s bones and the way they are put together can tell the story of how that body moved when it was alive.
Researchers can use other archaeological evidence to explore the ways of ancient people. In 1994, the first fossils of an unknown hominin were discovered in Ethiopia. Those who discovered the remains referred to the new discovery, an adult female person, Ardipithecus ramidus, nicknamed Ardi.
In the next 10 years, more than 100 fossils from Ardi’s species had been found and dated to between 4.2 million and 4.4 million years old. When scientists examined this collection of bones, they found certain features indicating bipedalism.
Humans have several unique characteristics such as an anatomy that enables toe pushoff, and four-legged mammals have all those bases covered. The shape of the pelvic bones, how the legs are positioned beneath the pelvis, and how the leg bones fit together all meant human beings were confined to walking.
Paleontologists noticed that the bipedalism that our species has not yet developed seems to have evolved around a million years after the earliest fossils from Ardi, which has been found in southern Ethiopia. Ardi was physically active even before the ancestors of our species had been.
Because of their close resemblance to other fossils found in southern Africa and other parts of the world, this species was nicknamed Australopithecus afarensis, which means ape from the south in Latin. It was female, so they gave it a nickname after the Beatles song ” Lucy ” had been popular.
Based on finds from Lucy, anthropologists discovered much about her genome, more than 300 individuals in the group. Lucy had a well-moulded pelvis, which made her the first non-human hominid to be discovered as a female and interpreted as a two-legged caretaker. The pelvis and upper leg bones made a morphological pattern indicating the capacity to walk on two legs.
F.afarensis’ foot-shaped flint fragments were found alongside methods of locomotion he possesses. This section of A.afarensis’ bone post mortem also recounts bipedal walking. Along with fossils, findings of other remarkable evidence were found, which illuminate how Lucy’s species moved.
Scientists have discovered fossilized footprints pressed into a bed of volcanic ash dating back as far as three million years ago. The footprints last about 100ft, and 70 palm prints suggest the presence of at least 3 individuals walking bipedal. Given the assumed age, the suspects would have been likely Australopithecus afarensis.
The tracks demonstrate that our out of Africa ancestors walked on two legs, but the gait is much like that of contemporary upright bipeds. Laetoli’s downhill footprints, which appear shaken as if human, shan’t ever be erased, which offers ironclad evidence for the bipedalism of this hominid 3.5 million years ago. Human beings comparable in bodily form to us would not arrive in Africa until a mere 1.8 million years ago.
Homo erectus was the first faunal mammal to procreate itself and travel around Earth’s atmosphere like we do today. Homo erectus also had a larger brain than all other prehistoric bipedal primates, and because of this origami, which are used in archaic handicrafts, were invented. Anthropologists believe Homo erectus is our great-grandparent and one of the first ancestors of humans, near which Homo habilis is situated.
So, as you can see, human walking took a long time to develop. It appears to have begun in Africa 4.4 million years ago, long before tool-making appeared. Why did early hominins walk upright? Perhaps it allowed them to see predators more easily, or to run faster, or maybe the environment changed and there were fewer trees to climb as early hominins did.
The human ancestor’s history of utilizing hands originated alongside the earliest increase in bipedalism. Hands were probably among the first tools that were utilized by humans like us.