In my experience, seats don’t recline nearly enough to really call it _reclining._ They go back maybe a few inches. You body weight hardly shifts enough to even change its center of gravity. The relief to your back is fleeting. A comic joked about it back in the 80’s. “This is upright. Now watch: this is reclining...!” His head goes back slightly and I swear real seats don’t go back much further!
The difference is just enough to keep your head from falling forward so you can sleep. The sad thing is the non reclining seats at the back of the plane and ahead of the exit row do not have this feature. When the guy in front of you uses his recline function you are double screwed if you are stuck in a non reclining seat.
The sardine effect is why I fly Delta, they are slightly better in the knee room department.
Ellen Degeneres did the reclining joke.
Way before she got crazy popular. And when she was still in the closet.
Oh, the good ole days.