Why do people grunt with effort? © Getty Images

Why do people grunt with effort?

Asked by: Angus Thorp, Staffordshire

When you exert yourself, it helps to stiffen your torso to provide a rigid anchor point for the muscles of your arms and legs. This works best if you hold your breath and tense your abdominal muscles, compressing the air in your lungs.

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As you ease off and breathe out again, the air is forced out of your throat, still partially clamped shut, and this creates the grunting sound. A 2014 study found that grunting gives tennis players stronger serves.

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