LivingSome body postures make us feel strong

Some body postures make us feel strong

postura-fuerteCertainbody postures, such as placing your hands behind your head or feet on the table,modify our hormonal levelsmaking us feelstronger, more powerful and “daring”, according to a study by Harvard researcher Amy JC Cuddy and her colleagues. On the contrary, contracting the body and bending the arms over the trunk “weakens” us. “This is the first scientific demonstration that body postures can affect our physiology,” concludes Cuddy.

In the study, released in the journalPsychological Science, the researchers asked 42 subjects to hold certain postures for two minutes. Specifically, half of the volunteers sat for a minute in a chair with their bodies stretched out, their hands behind their heads and their feet resting on the desk; and another minute standing, slightly bent over a table, with the palms of the hands resting on it. The other group tested two different postures: sitting in a chair with arms crossed and hands folded, and standing with arms and legs crossed tightly.

After the test, Cuddy and her colleagues took saliva samples to measure hormone levels and found thatin the first group, testosterone levels increased (19%) and levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, decreased, which among other effects causes memory loss and reduces the effectiveness of the immune system. In the second group, the posture had just the opposite effect. In subsequent tests, the scientists found that people with higher levels of testosterone also felt stronger, with “more energy”, and were willing to take more risks than their peers.

Since it only takes a short period of time to observe these hormonal changes, the findings could have many immediate applications. “I like the idea thata posture can modify physiology and psychologyof those who feel weak in a matter of minutes, “says Dr. Cuddy.

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