How to interpret body language according to sitting position – by Shay Eliav
While we all consciously control the words we choose to say, it is much harder for us to control his body language in a way that expresses what we want to say with it. This is often not necessary, because our brain makes us move without being noticed in a way that expresses our thoughts and feelings, but sometimes we would like to hide them better, or to know how to properly read the body language of others.
Here are five types of messages that our bodies send using different sitting positions, and with the information in the next 5 sections you will know how to control your body language, or how to read the thoughts of others.
1. Seating positions that indicate sexual interest and attraction
Usually, sitting with your knees in a certain direction indicates an interest in the person sitting in the area to which they point. Another sign of interest that can be seen in the sitting posture is leaning forward, which is the most direct way to show the person in front of us that we are interested in him or what he has to tell. Along with these, there are also two separate positions according to sex, which attest not only to interest, but in some cases also to sexual attraction:
Legged Legs (Men)
This position usually indicates a man’s interest in the person in front of him and sometimes also in sexual attraction. It causes the man to reveal his groin area, and symbolizes a sense of self-confidence and control of the situation. This position takes up a lot of space and it also contains a sexual allusion that indicates the male’s fertility or his willingness to fertilize. Needless to say, it may hurt some people, so even if you feel you have a lot of self-confidence, you may want to reduce the gap between the knees, depending on the person sitting in front of you.
Playing with the shoe (women)
While the shoe is loosely suspended on the foot, the woman may swing it and play with it, or at the same time insert it in and out of the foot. Such movement often attests to the woman’s interest and sometimes to sexual attraction, and it drives most men crazy, because it unconsciously reminds them of the repeated movements of sexual intercourse.
2. Seating positions designed to attract attention
One leg on the other is a very common sitting shape, which has a number of sub-poses designed to attract attention by increasing the size or accentuation of the body:
Ankle on Hip (Men)
This position is more comfortable for men than for close legs, although some women tend to sit in this way, usually those who feel self-confident and extroverted. Unconsciously, the man exposes his groin in this position and takes up a lot of space, indicating a sense of self-confidence and sometimes even arrogance and a sense of superiority. This position is like saying to a person sitting opposite, “You do not impress me, try harder.” For the most part, senior managers, for example, seem to sit in conference rooms, as opposed to the employees under them, who sit in a tense way that does not attract much attention.
Foot Stretching (Women)
Sitting with a leg on a leg causes the leg muscles to stretch and show their contours in a way that stimulates sexual desire in men. It is usually a comfortable sitting position for women, but some use it, sometimes unconsciously, to attract attention, especially if they change their legs frequently and each time put their feet on each other – just like a woman trying to seduce a man in the cinema.
3. Neutral sitting position – two feet on the ground
Placing the feet on the ground and keeping the hip width between knee and knee is the most neutral sitting position that exists, and in some cases it also controls the situation. It is a stable sitting position that does not attract attention and does not convey much information in terms of body language, so it is very effective in formal meetings or conferences.
4. Seating positions that indicate a sense of comfort and peace
In unofficial circumstances, each person can sit differently according to his or her personal comfort, and most of them can be seen with legs that are spread out in different ways and sometimes even oddly, depending on the closeness to the person against whom we sit. On the other hand, there are two poses that also indicate comfort and peace, but each conveys a different message along with it:
There is nothing more indicative of a sense of ease and openness than laying feet on the table. Most of the posture will come together with a combination of hands behind the head, indicating that the sitting person enjoys every moment of his life. This position conveys authority and freedom, so in some cases it may be rude when it is performed in front of a person who feels he has authority over us or sees us as equals, but we symbolize that this is not the case.
Such a sitting posture attests to relaxation alongside a great deal of attention from the person sitting. Most of us have been accustomed to sitting like this since our childhood in kindergarten or school while listening, and many of us continue to sit at an older age in situations where we feel comfortable enough to sit on the floor. In addition, it is the sitting position practiced by many while meditating, and is thus automatically connected to our head for a sense of peace and relaxation. Unlike the position of the legs at height, such a sitting does not convey authority and places us on the same, and sometimes even below, status of the person in front of us.
5. Seating positions that indicate stress and discomfort
Stress can take many forms in the body language, such as a leg that trembles nonstop or restlessness in the hands that requires some preoccupation. There are other less known signs of stress or fear in sitting, and these are the main ones:
That legging and ankle lockings in one another is usually a sign of restraint, as such posture prevents impulsive action, like the bite of a lip that prevents an unwanted slip of the tongue. It can express anger, frustration or fear that the seated person feels. Men usually wrap their ankles around the legs of the chair on which they are sitting and add to it clenched fists or a strong grip on the handles of the chair. Women on the other hand usually lock their ankles around each other and move their legs to the side while their hands rest on the handles of their chair or knees.
Crossed legs and folded hands
Such a sitting posture also attests to certain pressure and apprehension, with the most striking sign being the hands folded in one another. This signifies that the person is not willing to fully open himself, and it is usually possible to see people sitting like this during a discussion with certain consequences, or simply by bus or train, facing a stranger.
Usually, this type of sitting is indicative of an introverted person, but many women just sit there with the habit of sitting with a skirt. Men, on the other hand, do not have the same habit, and such a meeting is rare for them, except in cases where a man lacks self-confidence.
Hiding the groin area
Whether you’re covering your groin with your legs or doing it with your hands, just as your legs are screaming: “I’m here, look at me!” The crotch covers the message: “I’m shy and introverted, please do not hurt me.” This is an unconscious movement that stems from a feeling of shame, and although we have clothes on it, we imitate it without noticing it. Men will usually put their hands on the groin area, while women will clasp their legs to hide it.
Source: Sklavin D., reynermedia, Ben Northern, Beryl Chan, Skinny Casual Lover, DieselDemon,