There are many mysterious issues associated with watches, and one of the most bizarre is seeing someone wearing one upside down, on the inside part of the wrist. At first glance this defies both logic and common sense, which makes it easy to question the faculties of the wearer.
Surprisingly, though, there are some good reasons for doing it, and they don’t include starting some kind of bizarre trend on social media.
Let’s take a run through the legitimate ones and consider their more questionable counterparts, at which point you can consider yourself enlightened about this rather weird subject.
1. Watch Protection
This one’s situation-specific, but it does make a certain amount of sense, especially in harsh outdoor environments. It’s easy to scratch up the watch face of your smartwatch if you’re hiking and you run into some gnarly underbrush, for instance, so in this case having the forethought to protect a pricey smartwatch can actually be a pretty smart move.
A rough-and-tumble work environment is another good example. If you’re in construction, for example, you may need to access the watch throughout the day. Shifting the watch around in this way may decrease the chance of damage while allowing you to read it, get notifications, etc.
Once gain, this example is situation-specific. Sunlight can be a pain when it comes to reading a smartwatch, especially when it’s especially bright or coming at you from a bad angle.
The reflection from the watch can also do some damage eye-wise, believe it or not, so it’s not a bad idea to make this particular precaution a habit.
Athletes and military personnel are just two examples of folks who may do this on an ongoing basis, so in these scenarios it’s actually not all that bizarre.
3. Convenience and Multitasking
Every met someone who’s really anal about tracking time, notifications and other functions, to the point where you wonder if they’re obsessed with their smartwatch?
If you have, congratulations! You’ve just discovered another semi-legit reason for wearing a smartwatch upside down. It may not make sense to most of us, but for people who need to be on top of things from minute to minute, wearing a watch this way can create an easier reading angle.
The legitimate side of this question pertains to those who need to be relentless multitaskers. These folks genuinely rely on the constant flow of information that a comprehensive smartwatch can provide, so who are the rest of us to judge?
4. The Attention Seekers
Now we’re entering the world of the weird. Some people will do anything to get attention and start a would-be trend, and among certain groups wearing a smartwatch upside down is a really cool way to do that. Think teenagers, trend setters and genuine oddballs, and you can add anyone or any group to this list as you deem appropriate.
While their numbers are limited, there are certain professionals who glean serious benefits from wearing their smartwatch upside down.
For starters, think doctors or EMTs in an emergency situation—if you’re doing triage in an ER or at the scene of a bad accident, for example, it may be easier to wear your smart watch this way to take faster readings of health factors like pulse, blood pressure and so on.
Soldiers are another good example of how this kind of thing can work. In some situations the reflection from a smartwatch can be deadly, so that’s one situation in which wearing the watch this way can literally be a matter of life and death.
We’ll go with plumbers as the final example here. Imagine being up to your wrist in some kind of ungodly muck, in which case you’ll understand completely why your best option might be to wear the watch upside down and slightly further up your forearm. Plumbers know they’re on the clock, too, so adjusting the position of a smartwatch so that it’s upside down and out of harm’s way can be a better way to go than temporary removal.
No one really knows how fashion trends get started, other than the various social media influencers who seem to have access to some nameless fashion oracle whose identity remains a mystery to the rest of us. Some celebs and influencers will do anything to go viral or draw a few more eyeballs, so wearing a watch upside down is as good a reason as any to try to get attention this way.
7. Personal Choice
Some people just like to be different, and what better way to express their uniqueness than with their various personal accoutrements? Others may have a left hand/right hand reading conundrum that they’re looking to resolve. Once again, it may not make sense to most of us, but at the end of the day, who are we to judge?
8. The Wearability Factor
One of the odder issues that comes into play with wearing a smartwatch upside down is simple—how easy or hard is it to do?
This leads to all sorts of questions that play into the wearability factor. Is the band thick or thin? Is it designed to be functional, or is it more of a fashion statement?
These things can quickly become determining factors in whether it’s a smart idea to wear a smartwatch upside down, to the point where the professionals and outdoor types who need to do this may actually choose their watches accordingly.
The same factors apply to the watch itself. Is it sleek and stylish, or clunky and bulky? Is the design geared toward simplicity, or is it one of those smartwatches that seems to have been built to provide information overload?
These questions can be legitimate determining factors, especially among those with a genuine need to wear their smart watches this way.
This ends our brief tour of the potential reasons for wearing a smart watch upside down. Hopefully it’s at least been illuminating, and perhaps you’ve even been given a reason or two to try it if you’re ever in one of the aforementioned situations. It may be looked on as an odd behavior, but if it works for you, feel free to give it a shot.
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