Why Thigh Gap is so Important to Women

Bianca Zen | 5 Sep 2013

They may make skinny jeans look sexy, but how far can you go to widen the distance between your thighs?



It's the body trend that's launched hundreds of blogs, Twitter IDs and memes in the west. While back home, the thigh gap may not have acquired cult status yet, cosmetic surgeons and gym trainers say young Indian women are eager to widen the distance between their inner thighs.

Do you have one?

Stand straight before a mirror with your back upright, your left and right knees touching each other. If you see space between your inner thighs, you've got yourself a thigh gap. Very few women manage to achieve this naturally, driving some to unnatural diets resulting in eating disorders. Most Indian women won't see one thanks to their genes.

Fitness experts Mirror spoke to, said Indian women are naturally blessed with child-bearing hips. "Compared to their counterparts in the west, Indian women have wider pelvic bones, making their thighs thicker. They are unlikely to have the gap naturally," says cosmetic surgeon Dr Abraham Zachariah, head of the cosmetology department at Marol's Seven Hills Hospital.

Fitness expert Leena Mogre agrees. "A majority of Indians have an endomorphic body type; typically short and stocky, prone to weight gain, especially around the hip and thigh area," she says.

Genesis of idea

It's one trend that can be directly linked to the way the world of fashion and entertainment lays down rules of an ideal body. Style bibles tell them they must be fashionistas. Nothing less than a Asos dress (or at least a rip-off) will do. And to fit into the latest styles, they must have the body for it. Counselors say it's up to parents to help their kids maintain a good body image. The idea they must drill into their girls is to eat healthy and be fit, rather than fashionably slim.

Fill into the gap

Mansi Astha, a physiotherapist and consultant at Santacruz's K11 Fitness Academy, says the gym regularly gets women aged 25 to 50, who are concerned about fat reduction in specific areas. After the abs, the thighs are their nightmare. "They want to look good in skinny jeans, short skirts and shorts — outfits that focus attention on the legs. So, losing fat from their thighs is a pre-occupation," she says, adding that spot reduction is far from easy, if possible at all. "Each individual is prone to fat accumulation in a different area. This also happens to be the last area from where fat will get burned, so we don't encourage members to work out specific areas."

With a fight against genes, for the Indian woman, being slim wouldn't guarantee a thigh gap. "You would have to be very determined in your workout regime to acquire it," says Astha.

Extreme measure

What would work then, counter- productively of course, would be extreme diets. Some women choose to go the surgical route.

Cosmetic surgeons across Mumbai admit to receiving a steady stream of clients asking for fat removal from their thighs.

Dr Zachariah, who gets six patients a month for fat removal from the thighs, says the demand has functional reasons too. In not-so-slim-bodies, the inner thighs rub against each other, making walking tiresome. If the thighs are constantly pressed against each other, not only does the skin in the area turn dark and irritable, in our humid weather, it could lead to yeast infections.

Source: Times of India