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Put on your dancing genes and boogie
March 25, 2014 5:14 AM   Subscribe

Evolutionary biologists at Northumbria University have used science to figure out "attractive human dance moves" that demonstrate optimum genotypic and phenotypic health to prospective mates. "Cutting-edge motion capture technology" was used to record good and bad dancing. (Technoviking was reportedly unpleased.)
posted by Blazecock Pileon (29 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite

 
No one needs to click through to find out how bad this science is, assuming they were even half-serious.

There is already so much wrong with this abstract of the abstract it can't possibly recover.
posted by clvrmnky at 5:32 AM on March 25 [1 favorite]


Just tell 'em "Step off, I'm doin' the Hump."
posted by delfin at 5:32 AM on March 25 [3 favorites]


Do they account for the tequilla-shot variables?
posted by Thorzdad at 5:33 AM on March 25 [1 favorite]


Aww the sad little floursack people
posted by Mizu at 5:39 AM on March 25 [1 favorite]


Evolutionary biologists at Northumbria University have used science to figure out "attractive human dance moves" that demonstrate optimum genotypic and phenotypic health to prospective mates. "Cutting-edge motion capture technology" was used to record good and bad dancing. (Technoviking was reportedly unpleased.)

If one wanted to really find out what kind of dance moves were evolutionary successful (i.e. dudes get sex because they are doing it and other dudes aren't), they need only to go to a club and see which dudes are doing what and going off with who.

It would be silly to do a study like this on girls. Cuz, who cares.
posted by hal_c_on at 5:41 AM on March 25 [1 favorite]


Although seriously...I think they were just trying to explain why this shit was so famous.
posted by hal_c_on at 5:43 AM on March 25


You are doing science wrong if your conclusion is "The running man is good dancing."
posted by Rock Steady at 5:53 AM on March 25 [4 favorites]


After watching the two videos, I can only conclude that the opposite of the Running Man is the Walking Man.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 6:03 AM on March 25 [2 favorites]


Did they use Stevie Wonder in a corn maze for the "bad" dancer?
posted by schleppo at 6:05 AM on March 25 [2 favorites]


You might need to click "captions" for the "unpleased" video (lower right of the video display window) if you want a translation into english.

Also I dance much much worse than even the "bad" dancer. And he has a better butt than me.
posted by vapidave at 6:06 AM on March 25 [1 favorite]


researchers found no relationship between arm movement and dancing ability

OH THANK GOODNESS so I can continue to just let them dangle awkwardly then because I have no idea what to do with them otherwise
posted by ook at 6:11 AM on March 25 [3 favorites]


Yo, check my flex - Barney Google, followed up by the Cabbage Patch. Swag. All of the hominid primates scope my hyphy groove, and want to get their propagation of the species on.
posted by Slap*Happy at 6:13 AM on March 25


I am a clueless dancer. Well, I should say, I have exactly one clue.

About 10 years ago I sat in on a botany professor's lecture. He mentioned that he was suprised when he went to Africa that it seemed like there was a much higher proportion of great dancers there. Why should this be so? Was there a particular feature of their movements that made them so good?

After several trips, he believed that the answer was balance. That is, the African dancers avoided balance; the normal neutral position of the hips (with the major axis of the pelvis being horizontal) seemed to be undesirable.

Adopting this mindset has generated positive results.
posted by Jpfed at 6:52 AM on March 25 [3 favorites]


I would like to take the time to state a caption that a friend of mine said regarding a photo of me that she took and posted to FB...

"To truly appreciate this beautiful photo, imagine the fluid movement that is Dave interpretive dancing, and realize this is only a brief pause in that magnificence"

Just uh... So ladies??? If you're looking for a magnificent, fluid and beautiful dancer (don't look at my belly jiggles, please), I'm your man.

Also - that comparison to Technoviking was quite apt.
posted by symbioid at 6:53 AM on March 25 [1 favorite]


My own science experiment - conducted entirely within my own brain - concluded that dancers like the one in the first video (which is hilarious) are better at sex than the second one because movement. When you're on a dance floor and you see someone going for it you subconsciously think "sex with him will be exciting because he isn't inhibited, he can move his hips, he'll change direction without warning and generally mix it up." You see the second type of guy and think "he will essentially adopt one position and stay in it until I begin to silently weep."
posted by billiebee at 7:08 AM on March 25 [7 favorites]


Arms are VITAL to good dancing. You can use them goofily and it still looks cool if you do it right. But you can't just let them dangle, unless you're like, dancing like some stone dead goth or something (Gravers are a whole other matter). Sadly, while Bill Cosby isn't "smooth", I think I take up his style of groove when I dance. Slightly jilted, but yet, funky enough to flow at key points. I'm not much of a foot mover, and most of my dancing is expressive rhythms of my upper body, but the lets are still important.

And you have to watch the mouth and tongue. Just because someone might be a little stiff in the body when dancing, if they got a lot of mouth action, well, you may have some great oral success! Look for the Funky Tongue, the Waggylicious, the Woodpecker, The Little Dab'll Do Ya... All great tongue dance moves.
posted by symbioid at 7:57 AM on March 25 [1 favorite]


Study this, Northumbria.
posted by cmoj at 8:26 AM on March 25


So, dances like These?
posted by happyroach at 8:32 AM on March 25 [1 favorite]


When you're on a dance floor and you see someone going for it you subconsciously think "sex with him will be exciting because he isn't inhibited, he can move his hips, he'll change direction without warning and generally mix it up." You see the second type of guy and think "he will essentially adopt one position and stay in it until I begin to silently weep."

Amen! A person who is a good dancer (or at least a decent one) is communicating, first of all, that they have the guts to get on the floor and risk looking stupid and the persistence/drive to work at his dancing until they achieve some degree of ability. And possibly also has joy and happiness enough to want to dance. All are incredibly appealing, and among straight white dudes anyway, sadly rare. So much so that I tend to assume good male dancers are gay because so many straight white guys are terminally afraid to move their hips for fear of looking gay. Which just feeds back into the cycle.

The only exception is country-western dancing, which is masculine-looking enough that guys will let themselves do it. Sadly, all that many of them know how to do is shuffle a semi-two-step and maybe a halfhearted twirl. I don't know how many times I've ended up dragging someone around the floor backwards because they wouldn't lead and wouldn't try any steps. Dancing can be so much sweaty fun, and really sexy, and the fact that so many dudes are scared to do it, well, I blame the patriarchy.
posted by emjaybee at 8:46 AM on March 25 [3 favorites]


All are incredibly appealing, and among straight white dudes anyway, sadly rare. So much so that I tend to assume good male dancers are gay because so many straight white guys are terminally afraid to move their hips for fear of looking gay.

I'm pretty sure that MDMA changed all that back in 1987.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 9:14 AM on March 25


the normal neutral position of the hips (with the major axis of the pelvis being horizontal) seemed to be undesirable.

So many words for "shake your ass".
posted by benito.strauss at 9:49 AM on March 25 [3 favorites]




I don't totally get the skepticism, because off the videos alone it's clear that the Good Dancer has loads more confidence and is having a good time above and beyond the other guy who is just shuffling awkwardly to the beat and maybe thinking about which drink he's going to get next once a song he doesn't care about comes on.

But maybe I overly identify with one of those videos.
posted by pmv at 10:52 AM on March 25 [3 favorites]


When I was a kid, my mom used to dance with me to Thriller on the hi-fi, with the promise that eventually, being good at dancing would get me girls. It took a long time to overcome the schlumpy awkwardness and realize that if I could just make eye contact and have fun doing it, girls would be into it pretty much no matter what I did. It definitely helped me get the girl I've got now, and the girl before that, and the girl before that. I have no illusions that I'm good at dancing, but goddamn, I wish I'd figured out that you don't actually have to be all that great to have fun and get laid much earlier. (Most of my general early failure with girls I now put down to the SUPER SERIOUS fear of having fun in front of girls I liked.)

So, thanks ma, and thanks Michael.
posted by klangklangston at 11:29 AM on March 25 [6 favorites]


Obligatory ZeFrank links: How To Dance Properly and Advanced Dancing.
posted by Zack_Replica at 12:39 PM on March 25


If you're dancing in order to attract a mate, you're doing it wrong. Dancing is an ends, not a means to an ends.
posted by Bugbread at 6:14 PM on March 25


If you're dancing in order to attract a mate, you're doing it wrong. Dancing is an ends, not a means to an ends.

Animals around the world wildly disagree with that statement.
posted by hal_c_on at 10:22 AM on March 26 [1 favorite]


I think that's just a coincidental use of the word "dance". I've never, for example, heard any music playing on any of those documentaries about "mating dances".

Now, if you're dancing without music just to get a mate, go for it, you animal you!
posted by Bugbread at 6:15 PM on March 26


the normal neutral position of the hips (with the major axis of the pelvis being horizontal) seemed to be undesirable.

So many words for "shake your ass".


Free Your Mind And Your Ass Will Follow
posted by homunculus at 11:46 PM on March 26 [1 favorite]


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