© 2023 WOSU Public Media
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

This California Mayor Took A German Study On Neckties Very Seriously


News now about neckties. First, a medical study from Germany about ties. Then, a California mayor who took that study very seriously. NPR's Art Silverman reports.

ART SILVERMAN, BYLINE: The study published in the journal Neuroradiology says it appears men who wear ties get less blood to their brains. Mayor R. Rex Parris of the city of Lancaster wears ties, but he doesn't like to.

R REX PARRIS: I've always been irritated by the idea that people can force me to wear a tie.

SILVERMAN: So after reading about the study, he proposed the city forbid businesses from requiring employees to wear ties.

PARRIS: I think it's going to pass. The question is, how do you enforce it? I might do it with a civil penalty.

SILVERMAN: The study was conducted at the University Hospital of Kiel. Dr. Janne Gierthmuhlen says her team divided 30 young men into three groups.

JANNE GIERTHMUHLEN: One without a necktie, one where the necktie was loosened...

SILVERMAN: Both with open collars. The third group was more constricted.

GIERTHMUHLEN: The necktie was tightened and the collar closed.

SILVERMAN: The men had MRIs. The scans showed blood flow to the brains of that last group with a tight collar and tie. It went down by an average of 7.5 percent. It's not clear from the study how that affected their brains, if at all. Now, the compelling reason for this research?

GIERTHMUHLEN: The head of the Department of Neuroradiology doesn't like to wear neckties very much.

SILVERMAN: The head of the department, another necktie hater.

AARON MARINO: (Laughter) I definitely think that there's some bias in this study.

SILVERMAN: That's men's style consultant and YouTube fashion expert Aaron Marino. He is not buying the study's conclusion.

MARINO: If you have a necktie that is actually cutting off the circulation of blood, this is not a function of the necktie. It's - your collar's too small.

SILVERMAN: So keep it loose and think twice before wearing a necktie in an MRI. Art Silverman, NPR News. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Art Silverman has been with NPR since 1978. He came to NPR after working for six years at a daily newspaper in Claremont, New Hampshire.