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Sorry mom, having a sailor's mouth may actually make you stronger

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For all of you who had to get your mouth scrubbed with a bar of soap when you swore, here's good news: swearing can actually make you physically stronger, according to data compiled by the British Psychology Society.

 

The organization conducted two experiments to highlight the power of profanity.

In the first experiment, 29 people completed an intense bicycle test after swearing and not swearing. In the second experiment, 52 participants completed a handgrip test, again after swearing and not swearing. 

According to the experiments' results, those who swore produced more power.

Dr. Richard Stephens of Keele University, who lead the experiments, said, “We know from our earlier research that swearing makes people more able to tolerate pain. A possible reason for this is that it stimulates the body’s sympathetic nervous system - that’s the system that makes your heart pound when you are in danger."

“If that is the reason, we would expect swearing to make people stronger too - and that is just what we found in these experiments," he continued.

However, Stephens noted that researchers didn't find changes in other measurements, like heart rate, that would likely be affected by the sympathetic nervous system. As a result, Dr. Stephens said the extent of swearing in producing power remains unclear.

"So quite why it is that swearing has these effects on strength and pain tolerance remains to be discovered," Stepens said. "We have yet to understand the power of swearing fully."

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