It’s a myth in the sense of a tale that sounds plausible to the tellers. The teller, in this case, is Ian Tattersall, curator in the Division of Anthropology of the American Museum of Natural History, and author of Masters of the Planet, in which he tells the story:
Well, according to Tattersall, humans learned to walk upright because it helped them better regulate body temperature. And just maybe being taller helped them intimidate predators. Or, just like Darwin speculated, learning to walk upright may have had a lot of social benefits which led to monogamy. But if you are really looking for some deep scientific myth-making, Tattersall even offers this explanation:
Male bipedality allowed for genital display to keep the females attracted; while at the same time, by hiding their genitalia between the thighs, female bipedality concealed ovulation so that males needed to be continuously attentive to their mates, reinforcing their Fidelity
This, of course, is the stuff of science.J. R. Miller, “The Science of Myth-Making: How Humans Learned to Walk” at More Than Cake
Sure it is. And here is a selection of other “stuff of science” tales of how humans came to walk upright (bipedality):
Researchers: Supernova prompted humans to walk upright Funny, if bipedalism originated in a global catastrophe, that it never occurred to any other primate to resolve the problem by becoming fully bipedal. But keep thinking. Resist groupthink.
Bipedalism: Regulatory area cent.com/intelligent-design/bipedalism-regulatory-area-missing-in-humans/” target=”another”>missing in humans
Researcher: To Understand Human Bipedalism, Stop Assuming “A Chimpanzee Starting Point”
Rough terrain caused humans to start walking upright
Early bipedalism walked no straight line
Paleontologist: Humans walked on two legs from the beginning Carol Ward: It seems to be a behavior that was present in some of the earliest members of our branch of the family tree. It represented what was really the initial major adaptive change from any apelike creature that came before us.
We’ve also heard that bipedalism developed so we could hit each other. Or carry infants. Or scarce resources. Or save energy. Or cool down. But mainly so we could have our hands free for whatever. (Saving energy and cooling down don’t really count here because lots of other methods would have worked; they just wouldn’t have freed the hands at the same time.)
See also “I’m Walkin’, Yes Indeed I’m Walkin’” But Not Because It’s Necessarily a Better Way to Get Around
Also, Design perspectives and the physiology of walking