Americans Getting Too Fat for Theater Seats


Oh, America: Not only are we getting too fat to fight, we’re getting too fat to go to the theater.

According to The Wall Street Journal, a theater-development company called Theatre Projects Consultants released a study yesterday that found that the average standard width of performing-arts theater seats has increased from 21 to 22 inches over the last 20 years. The primary reason? Obesity. As the report states, “Americans have gotten taller and heavier, and as expectations for accessibility, comfort, and amenities have changed, seat spacing and auditorium size has increased.”

The study is based on findings from the group’s work in 1,200 facilities across the world. One of them is New York’s City Center, whose current renovation includes expanding the width of its seats by an average of two inches, and the distance between rows from 32 inches to between 33 and 48 inches. Presumably, the new seats won’t come with 32-ounce cup holders.