The idea of ‘thin’ and slender waist being good and desirable gets inculcated in everyone from a very early age in subtle ways. It is promoted through advertisements, matrimonials, and any social way possible.
But there are some people who are ‘naturally’ really slender, at least that is what the woman who is believed to have one of the tiniest waists in the world, says.
Guinness world records are about extremes, and the record holders for the tiniest waist and the longest fingernails certainly fit that category. For these women, beauty is anything but skin deep.
The smallest waist belongs to Cathie Jung (USA, born on 1937), who stands at 1.72 m (5 ft 8 in) and has a corseted waist measuring 38.1 cm (15 in)
Her enthusiasm for Victorian clothes is why at the age of 38 she started wearing a 15.24 cm (6 in) training belt to gradually reduce her then 66.4 cm (26 in) waist. She has never had surgery to define her waist.
Since 1983, she has worn a corset 23 hours a day, only removing it for her daily shower.
The mother of three, who does not eat a special diet or exercise to maintain her waist, says: “We had no intention of setting a record. It was about dressing appropriately for the age.”
Cathie Jung began her waist training journey in 1959 just before she got married to her husband Bob. Back then, the ‘inch reducing’ body corsets that were very popular at the time fascinated him and imagined his wife with a small waist.
In 1959 Cathie had a 26” but thanks to the new corset, she shaved down four inches and walked down the aisle with a 24” waist. This was officially the start of her waist-training journey. Decades down the line, she has no intention of stopping.
In 2015, Bob who happens to be a physician explained what happens when corsets are worn for extended periods. Organs in the body tend to shift around a lot less since the torso gradually reduces in size.