Do you know how to hug a tall person? If the answer is no, don’t worry. You’re not alone. Many people struggle with this simple but often overlooked social interaction daily.
Perhaps you are intimidated by their height, or perhaps you have never had the opportunity to encounter someone so tall before in your life. Either way, it is important to understand how to hug a tall person correctly and effectively if you ever find yourself in that situation again.
There are many ways that people struggle with hugging a tall person, from breaking eye contact and ending too quickly to awkwardly bending your neck instead of leaning in for the hug.
However, once you know how to hug a tall person properly, it becomes much easier the next time around! Keep reading for some helpful tips and tricks that will make hugging a tall person more natural from now on!
What’s the Deal with Hugging a Tall Person?
Hugging a tall person can seem daunting, but it’s really not that different from hugging someone much closer to your height. The main difference is that the way you position your bodies during the hug will be slightly different.
Know the Basics of a Proper Hug
There are a few standard rules of thumb that most people follow when giving and receiving a hug, regardless of the height or length of the person in front of them. These rules help you hug a tall person without any issues or discomfort.
Make sure to stand close enough to your partner so that you can comfortably fit your arms around them.
Make sure to keep your head and neck straight while leaning into the hug.
Make sure to hold the hug long enough to be appropriate for the situation.
Make sure to hug from the side, not from the front.
If you follow these rules, you are much more likely to hug a tall person correctly and effectively.
How to Hug Tall People without It Being Awkward
Don’t Worry About the Height Difference
A hug is about showing affection, warmth, and emotion between two people. It has very little to do with height and more to do with the amount of space between two people. Two people can be hugging and one can be standing on their tippy-toes, and it still isn’t a big deal!
Even if the person you are hugging is significantly taller than you, this doesn’t necessarily make it more challenging to hug them correctly. You just have to make sure to position your body correctly, and then you can hug the person confidently and comfortably.
Establish Eye Contact before the Hug
Before you even begin to position your body to hug a tall person, make sure to look them in the eye so that you can establish a sense of connection with them. This will help you to feel more relaxed during the hug and make it easier to hug the person without feeling overwhelmed or nervous.
When you are starting to get close to the person, make sure to break eye contact for a split second to glance down at their body before looking back up at their face. This will allow you to position yourself more effectively to hug the person, so you don’t have to worry about standing on your tip-toes or bending your neck awkwardly.
Don’t Bend Your Neck or Lean Back
One of the most common mistakes that people make when hugging a taller person is to bend their neck awkwardly so that they can reach up to their shoulders. This is a mistake that you should be sure to avoid!
Instead, try to keep your head and neck as straight as possible when leaning into the hug. This will help you to hug the person comfortably and make for a more effective hug overall.
If you bend your neck too far back, you could strain your muscles, and this will only make the hug more uncomfortable for both of you. If you bend your neck slightly but keep it mostly straight, however, the hug will go much more smoothly.
Don’t Bend Your Knees When Hugging a Tall Person
Another common mistake that you should be sure to avoid when hugging a taller person is bending your knees. Hugging someone taller than you is difficult enough without piling on unnecessary challenges.
Instead, try to keep your knees as straight as possible when hugging the person. This will make the hug more effective and will make it easier to stand up straight and tall when you are done hugging the person.
If you bend your knees while hugging a taller person, you could very easily lose your balance and fall backward or forwards. This is obviously not ideal, so be sure to avoid bending your knees to hug a taller person, even if it feels a bit awkward at first!
Hug from the Side Rather Than the Front
Another common mistake that people make when hugging a taller person is to hug them from the front, where both people rest their heads on each other’s shoulders. This is a hug that people often associate with families, but it is not appropriate for many other scenarios.
Instead, try to hug the person from the side, resting your head on the person’s chest or shoulder. Hugs from the side allow for a much more appropriate amount of space between you and the person, and they are considered more casual and affectionate than hugs from the front.
Additionally, hugs from the side are often more comfortable because they are less restrictive and leave you with more room to move and adjust your position.
Be Sure to Grab Shoulders, Not Bums
When hugging someone shorter than you, it is easy to grab the tops of their arms or their back, but when it comes to someone taller than you, the place you grab is likely to be their bum instead of their shoulder.
The problem with this is that it can be extremely uncomfortable for both parties of the hug as well as being seen as inappropriate in some cultures. Additionally, when you grab someone’s bum, it can make it awkward for them to return the hug.
So, if you want to be sure to hug a tall person correctly, make sure to grab their shoulders and avoid their lower half altogether!
Maintain a Small Distance between Your Heads
This is one of the most important aspects of hugging a tall person. When hugging a person who is taller than you, it is all too easy to simply bend down, wrap your arms around them, and end the hug quickly.
This can look extremely awkward, however, so make sure to maintain a small distance between your heads as you hug the tall person. You don’t have to bend down very far — or at all, really — and you can even bend your knees if you need to, but make sure you keep your heads at a distance so the other person doesn’t have to bend down far either!
This will make the hug look much more natural and will allow you to hug the other person comfortably for as long as you need to.
Don’t Be Afraid of Holding on for Longer
Shorter people often end hugs with tall people prematurely because they feel like it has been long enough and doesn’t want to overstretch the situation. The problem with this is that it looks extremely awkward and unnatural, not to mention that it can be seen as rude to end the hug so soon.
Instead, make sure to hold on for a little while longer than you would with a shorter person. This will make the hug look and feel more natural, and it will also allow you to make the most of the situation.
Just Be Yourself!
Finally, remember to just be yourself! Hugging a tall person can be intimidating, especially if you don’t know what you’re doing, but with a few helpful tips and tricks, it doesn’t have to be! All you have to do is be yourself and make sure to keep the hug comfortable and relaxed for both parties involved. From there, the rest is easy!
Hugging a Tall Person: Final Words
Hugging a tall person isn’t all that different from hugging someone much shorter than you. The main difference is that you have to consider the fact that the person is taller when you position your body for the hug.
If you follow a few simple rules of thumb, such as standing closer to the person, keeping your head and neck straight, and hugging from the side, you are more likely to hug a tall person correctly and effectively. What’s more, you will likely feel much more comfortable during the hug this way!