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Being very tall or very short can present a lot of challenges. One area where people sometimes run into difficulty is with the humble hug. If you’re a lot shorter than the person that you’re hugging, it can cause embarrassment and make it appear as tho you have never hugged a human being in your life.
If you want to know how to hug tall people, just relax, don’t over think it and remember, it’s just as awkward for tall people to hug shorter people too. But there are of course going to be some restrictions and limitations when it comes to the various people in your life that you hug.
For example, if the person that you’re hugging is tall enough that you’re at chest level with them, a hug could be more personal than either of you is comfortable with. When this is your Boss, or your Teacher it can be quite intrusive. But that’s not to say you shouldn’t hug the tall person in your life if they are a willing partner.
Because tall people love hugs just as much if not more than regular height people. Why?. Because us taller folks sometimes get neglected and are welcomed with a handshake instead to avoid the awkwardness of height difference.
Quick Links To Info On This Page
How to Hug Someone that is Taller Than You
Hugging someone taller than you can be achieved on both a personal level and a professional level. But it is important to separate the two when the time comes. For obvious reasons.
Hugging On A Personal Level
So this area of hugging is more geared towards a potential partner, someone you would like to get to know better or simply your current tall partner.
Hugging someone that is taller than you when you already know them rather well is not such a big deal. Most likely the elephant in the room has been and passed. But if the romance hasn’t begun yet, how should you go about hugging a taller person.
If You’re A Guy
Yes, guys do like taller girls so if you’re a shorter guy the approach I would take is to wrap your hands around the Woman’s waist. With your head geared more towards her shoulder to avoid any frontal awkwardness. But don’t dive in so deep that your head is under the tall persons armpit. This is not good for anyone.
Avoid trying to throw your arms around the taller Women and hug around the neck. While can be seen as romantic or as sign that someone likes you, if you fail it’s going to be super embarrassing. Especially if your arms don’t reach all the way around her neck and you end up basically leaning on her.
Don’t make the hug any longer than it needs to be. No point adding to the awkwardness of the first hug when height is a concern.
If You’re A Woman
It’s not unusual for the Man to be taller than the Women when in terms of a relationship. Why are Men Taller?. in this case it doesn’t really matter. What matters is that you know how to hug the taller Man.
Depending on the status of your relationship with the Man, a hug around the neck is a surefire way to indicate intimacy. Many times it will lead to a kiss. So if this is the angle you wish to play, try standing on your tippy toes and leaning in to wrap your arms around his neck.
As a shorter female, you should avoid just going in for the quick waist hug. Especially if the Man doesn’t know how to hug a shorter person. This can result in your head crashing into the tall persons torso. Depending on how tall he is, this could end up painful as his elbow or ribs dig into your face.
Another concern when using this method is facial disorientation. Meaning you could get you make up smudged, lose eyelashes in the process and even end up wiping snot on the poor Mans clothes. If you wear glasses, these too could be in the line of fire. Preferably the Man will come down to your level or at least lower his head somewhat and you will have arms reach to wrap around his shoulders or neck.
Avoid side hugging as this is a dead giveaway that you don’t know how to hug someone taller than you.
In A Committed Relationship Yet Want To Hug Your Tall Partner?
Generally this is not too much of a concern if you have good communication with your partner. You will both have found your own unique methods in which to hug each other successfully.
But there is no harm in learning some new methods of hugging a taller partner. This short video takes a light approach on the subject and shows some ways in which you and the tall love of your life can take hugging to the next level.
How To Hug A Tall Person You Don’t Know
You can do a few things to make hugs feel less uncomfortable, especially if it’s someone you don’t know. Or an authority figure in your life such as parents in law, new boss, Supervisor, legal entity etc. One option is to try to stand on higher ground. Hug them on a step so that you’re closer in height, for example.
This option is not also applicable and does need some pre planning. So a surprise hug from a tall person can make this method useless.
Alternatively, try going in for a side hug, so that you’re not pressed up against their chest, and the hug feels a bit more relaxed. But don’t go full on side hug or it can become even more awkward. Aim your head for there shoulder instead of full on hugging their arm.
Pick Your Position
If you don’t want to do the side hug, then stand up as straight as you can, and hug normally. If the height difference is slight, then an over/under grip on them is fine. If you’re much shorter, then go for a double underhook grip (unless the person you are hugging wrestled in college, in which case they may resist that grip and you’ll pummel with them instinctively!), and turn your head to one side so that your ear is resting against their sternum. You’ll hear their heartbeat, which will make for a nice personal moment.
If the person that you are hugging is very tall, then they will be used to hugging people much shorter than them and aware of the ‘challenges’ and they will be used to people feeling a little uncomfortable. They will also be used to making things easier for people, by leaning in, for example, so that they can get closer to a person’s level.
A Quick Hug Is A Good Hug
Keep the hug short. If it’s someone you know well then you might be able to come up with some form of greeting to use instead of a hug – such as a fist bump. That will make life easier for you both!. But on first time greetings an extended hug can make the situation more awkward then it needs to be.
Relax, It’s Not The End Of The World
The most important thing is to just relax. If you’re hugging someone, then you probably have a good relationship with them and things won’t be too formal. Don’t worry too much about whether it’s offensive to stand on your toes or whether you come across goofy with the grip that you choose. Just enjoy an affectionate hug and a smile.
If it does become awkward or goofy, laugh about it. This will take the pressure off both you and the tall person as they are under just as much pressure as you are.
Being short isn’t always easy, but hugging people doesn’t have to be complicated. If you’re not someone that would normally be described as short, then this might be a new experience for you.
Spare a thought for the people who are smaller than average and who face challenges all the time. Whether it’s getting things down from the top shelf, or finding that social interactions leave you feeling slightly child-like, there’s a lot of things that little people go through on a day to day basis that those who have longer legs just do not have to think about.
4 thoughts on “How To Hug Tall People Without It Being Awkward”
I must confess as a reasonably tall guy 6’1” to be with a taller woman for me is
not only embarrassing and very humbling
not matter what this magnificent statuesque woman will relate to me. I was recently in the company of a wonderful 6’4” woman and she totally recognized my
anxiety she slipped off her heels and bent/leaned over and asked if this was better, it wasn’t.
It certainly can be awkward at times to hug a much taller person but at the end of the day, we need to relax a bit more and not take it all too seriously. That goes for both parties involved.
Uhm … There is a tall man who has hugged me several times, in the last few years and HE chooses the side hug. He is both highly religious and very married. It is a very nice hug. Much better than the one I got from an even taller man, which wound up with him standing a bit far away, leaning over, embracing my shoulders gently and generally seeming apologetic for his height. Which, I don’t think was his emotional state, but, it was disappointing.
However, later on, one day, he simply walked up and threw an arm around me, in such a way that I ended up with the surprise of my arm around his waist. Which all felt very nice and I miss it, almost daily.
getting a hug from a tall person can be strange at times, but it’s no different to hugging a stranger really. There’s always an element of hesitation for most people regardless of height. But tall people can give the best hugs if done right.