Would you ever want to go to space? Space tourism is on the rise. Now only for the very rich, but there are also people who will do it for nothing. For example, virologist Ab Osterhaus, he said last night in Op1. He is dizzy.
What seems? It is impossible to be afraid of heights in space. That’s what Pieter Frijters, fear expert at Mindtuning, says. “As soon as the distance is no longer tangible, you can no longer be afraid of heights and that’s what happens in space.”
In a small plane low to the ground, you can be afraid of heights because the distance is tangible. If you go ten kilometers or much higher, then it is no longer a question of height and depth, but of abstract space. This is also the reason why André Kuipers was able to go into space as an astronaut despite his fear of heights. The International Space Station is located 400 kilometers above Earth.
“The fear of flying has nothing to do with the fear of heights, but with claustrophobia,” says Frijters. One has the impression that as soon as the door closes, there is no more way out.
Astronauts with a fear of heights
However, there are exceptions. ‘Spacegeek’ Hens Zimmerman has a weekly space travel podcast. US astronaut Joseph Acaba suffered from vertigo during a spacewalk at the ISS in 2017, he later said.
“You are afraid of heights if there is a reference point nearby, for example the ISS passing below you,” Zimmerman explains. When asked, Frijters agrees. This is an example of tangible distance.
You don’t see the height
Fear of heights plays no role during space travel. “As an astronaut, you are squeezed horizontally in your seat at launch, you don’t look out the window. Then you have other priorities,” explains the podcast creator.
On the other hand, you may have to deal with fear of heights before launch, especially when boarding the rocket. Rockets can be up to 100 meters long. “If you take the elevator and look down, it can really hurt you,” Zimmerman explains.
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