What Your Movements May Reveal About How You’ll Get Along With Another Person

The way we move can offer a surprising level of insight into our personalities, according to new research.

A team of European researchers recently found that each of us has an “individual motor signature” — and this signature forms a blueprint for mapping out subtle differences in our movements compared to others, Dr. Krasimira Tsaneva-Atanasova, a professor of mathematics for health care at the University of Exeter in England and a co-author of the research, told The Huffington Post.

While the mechanics of human movement on a broad level has been well-studied, scientists have paid less attention to individual differences in movement, until now.

“We show that different individuals have different motor signatures,” she said. “In other words, individuals could be classified based on the way they move.”

Namely, the extent to which your movements are similar to another person’s can determine how easily you can coordinate with that person and how similar your behaviors are.

The research, which was published in the journal Interface on Wednesday, involved a series of three experiments and about 82 participants. Some of the participants were asked to play a “plain mirror game,” in which two players imitated each other’s movements, which were tracked and analyzed.

It turned out that the players who were better at mimicking each other’s movements — including qualities like speed and weight of movement — also exhibited more collective behaviors. By comparing the two individuals’ movement signatures, the researchers could also determine the level of comfort and rapport in the relationship.

Imitation is known to be important to our ability to develop friendships and form bonds with others.

“We know that when people move in synchrony — marching, chanting, drumming, etc. — it stimulates collaboration,” said Carol Kinsey Goman, body language expert and author of The Silent —> Read More

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