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During the ascent of STS-135 the astronauts seem to be keeping their elbows up away from their sides with their hands forward. It can be seen throughout the ascent, here are two clips when it happens.

time index 19:34

time index 20:38

Is there reason for them holding their arms in this position?

Also, why to they keep on adjusting their mics?

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    $\begingroup$ Remember, they're lying on their backs. $\endgroup$ – amI Nov 7 at 23:40
  • $\begingroup$ These clips are during the ascent. The second clip is when they say, "nice up here, at 300,000 feet" are told "Atlantis, negative return." I don't think they are lying on their backs. $\endgroup$ – Bob516 Nov 7 at 23:45
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    $\begingroup$ From the pad until MECO, the local acceleration vector is normal to the seat back, so it feels like lying on a bed. With up to 3 gs, pointing the forearm 'up' (forward) removes torques on the elbow. After MECO, all joints tend toward a neutral (half flexed) position. $\endgroup$ – amI Nov 8 at 0:00
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    $\begingroup$ I should add that rather than just resting the forearms on the chest, the upwards position is a better home for quickly pressing any switches, but I didn't want to give an 'answer'. $\endgroup$ – amI Nov 8 at 0:52
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    $\begingroup$ @amI I think you should turn your comments into an answer, actually. $\endgroup$ – Russell Borogove Nov 8 at 3:32

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