I bend my arm inward, or upward, at the elbow, and again at the wrist -- a posture that forms a triangle if there's space (or a cat) in between. I do something similar with my legs. Lounging around with limb-triangles pointing off in all different directions, or tangled up with each other in the position that teachers call criss-cross applesauce... well, that looks flexible. Standing with that same sharply bent wrist and elbow-- ah, now the pose looks fearful and self-protective. But strumming a guitar with my arm in that triangle, perception changes yet again. Now I am simply told my posture looks a bit off. Finally we have an observation, devoid of false inference.
There's a picture of me even younger, eleven or twelve, holding a bell pepper out toward the camera -- a little bitty girl holding a little bitty lightweight pepper -- and you see the same tight, popping muscles you see here in this picture. There's another picture of me that age with (ack!) bare upper arms, and you notice something else -- that there's such low tone in the upper arm that it actually looks concave. Women tend to know what their worst physical feature is! Mine are my arms: such obvious muscle tone irregularities if I don't hide 'em with sleeves.
Muscle tone irregularites ... There's your flexibility. And there's your fear.