Dating and the Power of Proper Posture

Posture and Dating

By Erika Ettin

Sit up straight! Don’t cross your arms! Look me in the eye!

These sound like things our grandmas used to tell us when we were teenagers, right?

Fortunately or unfortunately, as it turns out posture matters, and it doesn’t just matter in real life when you’re face-to-face with someone, but in online dating, too.

Science says it’s all about posture

The National Academy of Sciences published the results of two studies recently—based on both in-person meetings at a speed-dating event and an app-based online dating site—showing that three things are true:

  1. Expansive body posture, e.g. arms outstretched, increases one’s romantic desirability, in contrast to contractive body posture, like arms crossed
  2. Results are consistent across genders.
  3. Perceived dominance, and perceived openness are mechanisms through which expansiveness exerts its effect.

In the first study, researchers filmed 144 speed-dating sessions, focusing on facial expressions, gestures, and posture. After the sessions, the participants were asked whether they wanted to meet that same person again, which would indicate success. It turns out that those who gestured with their hands and moved their arms nearly doubled their odds of getting a "yes" as compared to those who sat still or kept their arms to themselves, she said.

Dating and Posture

To test whether the same thing was true in online dating scenarios, the researchers took six heterosexual people and set up two online dating profiles for each person on a GPS-based dating app, one with photos in expansive poses and the other showing them in contractive postures. Again, it turned out that the more expansive poses garnered more "yes" responses from users of the dating app.

What does all of this mean? In a world of dating where so much is based on immediate first impressions, especially online, overt displays of this "expansive" posture can increase one’s chances of initial romantic success. It could be the difference between marking a "yes" or a "no" at a speed-dating event or a "left swipe", which indicates a pass, vs. a "right swipe", which indicates interest, on a dating app. When being compared to others in rapid-fire succession, you want to be sure to give yourself the best odds of getting chosen by a potential date.

Now, this "expansive" role doesn’t necessarily trump all of the other photo advice I could give, including my five roles of thumb:

  1. The main profile picture should be a clear headshot of yourself
  2. Less is more
  3. Be by yourself in the shot
  4. Have one "interesting picture"
  5. Be accurate

If you do follow this advice, then the more open posture may be just the thing that pushes you over the top. Keep in mind, though, that you don’t want your photos to look contrived, so try not to just flail your arms for no particular reason. Maybe instead you’re singing in the rain with your arms outstretched to the sky, or maybe you’re jumping on a trampoline with your arms flying high. Or maybe you’re just happy to be alive, and your arms are outstretched to show it. Whatever it is, stretch it out, baby. Science says it works.

Want more advice on which photos to use and which not to use? Go crazy!

 

 

Disclaimer: We work hard to offer you valuable and reliable information about all of the products and services we review. In order to provide you with this free service, we use links on our site that provide us with commissions for referring you to the seller's site. We guarantee that this does not influence the material we present, but may influence the positioning on our site, and only supports our efforts to offer you the best and most relevant information possible.

Advertising Disclosure

This site is a free online resource that strives to offer helpful content and comparison features to its visitors. Please be advised that the operator of this site accepts advertising compensation from companies that appear on the site, and such compensation impacts the location and order in which the companies (and/or their products) are presented, and in some cases may also impact the rating that is assigned to them. To the extent that ratings appear on this site, such rating is determined by our subjective opinion and based on a methodology that aggregates our analysis of brand market share and reputation, each brand's conversion rates, compensation paid to us and general consumer interest. Company listings on this page DO NOT imply endorsement. Except as expressly set forth in our Terms of Use, all representations and warranties regarding the information presented on this page are disclaimed. The information, including pricing, which appears on this site is subject to change at any time.

GOT IT

The Best Dating Sites

Must Read

boosting-zoosk-profile

The Ultimate Guide to Boosting Your Zoosk Dating Profile

Read more
eharmony free trial plans to find love

Find a Serious Relationship on eHarmony, for Free

Read more
Meet Jewish singles online

The Best Dating Sites and Apps for Jewish Singles

Read more
Muslim couple at park

The Best Dating Sites and Apps for Muslim Singles

Read more
How much does Match.com cost?

How Much Does Match.com Cost?

Read more
professionals meet on the best dating sites

The Best Dating Sites for Professionals

Read more