Credit: Walt Disney Pictures

You know how the old saying goes: Improve your posture, improve your love life. (Okay, so maybe we just made that up, but let’s talk about why it should become a mantra for your love life.)

In the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a new, fascinating study was published and it reveals that our posture may be closely tied to our relationship status. With 144 speed-dates occurring before them, the study’s authors analyzed exactly what made certain individuals more desirable than others. During this time, they also aimed to figure out which nonverbal expressions could be connected to dominance, love, and liking.

Credit: Walt Disney Pictures /

In the end, researchers realized there was a key difference between expansive and contractive postures, according to Women’s Health. Those with expansive postures (outstretched limbs) were found to be most attractive to potential suitors. In fact, the study states that “each one-unit increase in coded behavior from the video recordings nearly doubling a person’s odds of getting a ‘yes’ response from one’s speed-dating partner.” On the other hand, people with contractive postures – those who were hunched over and closed-off – were not as sought-after.

To take this experiment a step further, 3,000 profile pictures from a popular, Global Positioning System-based online-dating app were examined. The results: App users were more likely to swipe right when they came across someone with open arms (and an open heart!).

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“Mediation analyses demonstrate one plausible mechanism through which expansiveness is appealing: Expansiveness makes the dating candidate appear more dominant,” reads the study. This means that people in search of a partner are more likely to be attracted to someone displaying dominance – no matter what their gender. This is especially the case when we only have a few seconds to figure out whether or not we “like like” someone.

Now at least we have a great excuse to try to improve our posture. Both our love lives and our spines with prob thank us in the end.