The Cobra

The person leans back and folds his/her arms behind the head openly.

body language 1 CobraSelf-confidence The person feels safe and underlines his/her high status.
“I have everything under control.”

Superiority The person feels safe regarding the issue and/or superior to a person.
“I’m smarter than you.”

Explanation
The body is open and yet the person claims territory. He/she shows distance and emotional coldness. The gesture makes us look bigger and shows dominance.

Categories body, easy, dominant, open, territorial

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Interlock

The person crosses his/her arms and blocks the chest and stomach.

body language 3 interlockDistance and Defense The person has a distant attitude towards a person or situation.
“You can’t expect me to believe that.”

Restraint The person listens to the matter , but is not yet ready to act.
“We’ll see how things develop.”

Explanation
We protect our bodies from danger by building a shield. This self hug soothes and prevents us from acting rash. If hands or fists are tensed, they reinforce the defensive meaning.
Caution Crossed arms are not always a defensive reaction. Depending on the situation, they can be relaxing or caused by cold. If the hands are eased up, it is only a ‘soft barrier’. If the hands are tensed up, it shows the greater displeasure.

Categories body, uneasy, defensive

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Lint Picker

The caller interrupts eye contact and removes real or imaginary lint from the arm or table.

body language 6 lint pickerRejection & Reservation
The person does not like what he/she hears or thinks that no place for his/her point of view. Alternatively he/she pushes an argument figuratively.
“I don’t want to hear this.”

Explanation
The lint picker is found when a person does not agree with the subject. The person holds back to express his/her opinion. Encourage the person to say what he/she thinks.

Categories arm

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Recliner

The body is open and leans back relaxed.

Self-confidence The person is relaxed and feels good.body language 4 recliner
“Everything is fine.”

Explanation
An open posture makes us vulnerable. We open ourselves, if we have nothing to fear and we feel self-assured.

Categories body, easy, open

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Sphinx

The person touches the nose with a finger.

body language 2 sphinxSkepticism The person is uncertain about the matter at hand.
“I am not convinced by what I am saying or you are telling me.”

or Calming If the person is emotionally involved, he/she wants to calm himself/herself down.
“I don’t want to see or hear this.”

Explanation
If a person feels uncomfortable – e.g. when lying -, the breathing speed and heart rate increases. As a result, the blood vessels expand in the nose. The tingling can trigger the touch. The gesture is an indicator of discomfort – it does not proof lying!

Categories face, uneasy, defensive

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Nod

The head is slightly tilted forward.body language The Nod

Disapproval The person has a critical, judgmental attitude about the other person or the current topic.
“I think nothing of it!”

or Greeting The person nods and greets with a slight bow.
“Hello!”

Explanation
How long the head is tilted and the context provide changes the meaning of this gesture: the longer the stare, the more disapproval. A critical look over the reading glasses, reminds of a teacher and may be intimidating.

Categories face,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Clinger

One or two hands hold on to a desk or chair.body language The Clinger

Insecurity The person feels uncomfortable and seeks protection.
“This situation is very unfamiliar.”

Explanation
We cling to objects when we seek protection. They serve as a barrier and holding on keeps our hands under control. At the same time, this gesture takes the freedom to move. This gesture should be avoided in presentations, so the speaker remains flexible.

Categories arms/hands, uneasy,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Recliner

The body is open and leans back relaxed.body language The Recliner

Self-confidence The person is relaxed and feels good.
“Everything is fine.”

Explanation
An open posture makes us vulnerable. We open ourselves, if we have nothing to fear and feel confident.

Categories body, easy, open

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Head Rest

The head rests on the hand.body language The Head Rest

Disinterest or Boredom or Fatigue The head rests on the hand and the person does not follow anymore.
“I would like to do something different now.”

Explanation
This pose shows that the person has no interest in the topic (anymore). He/She does not interrupt but awaits the situation’s end. The more the head is supported, the stronger this sign is.

Categories face

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Thumb Pointer

The hands are in the pockets and the thumbs are visible.body language The Thumb Pointer

Sovereignty and Self-confidence The person has a high status.
“I know that I am good.”

Sexuality The person is looking for a partner.
“Look at my genitals.”

Explanation
The visible thumbs indicate dominance and sovereignty, no matter if the hand disappears in your pocket or holds the lapel. This gesture is a common sign that someone feels comfortable. It may also indicate low status, if the thumb disappears in the pocket. Gestures showing a low status should be to be avoided – especially by persons in executive positions.

Categories arms/hands, easy, dominant

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

Eye Movements

The eyes focus in multiple imaginary triangles.body language Eye Movements

Eye Movement The view focuses either between

(A) eyes and forehead (business look)

or (B) eyes and mouth (friendly look)

or (C) eyes and chest or crotch (intimate look).

Explanation
If eyes meet for more than two thirds of the time, the other person is either interested (dilated pupils) or he/she puts out a non-verbal challenge (constricted pupil). If a person likes the other, he/she often looks back. This has the effect that the other person may realize that he/she is liked.

Categories face

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Nose Compactor

The fingers clench the nose’s bridge and the eyes are closed.body language The Nose Compactor

Overload The person is tired and overwhelmed by the situation.
“This is too much.”

Isolation The person shields himself/herself from the outside world.
“I need to compose myself.”

Explanation
Our brain reacts to unpleasant situations by looking away or closing eyes. By avoiding eye contact, the mind selects which information is perceived and which gets discarded. A person can recover and get back into the situation by fading out the environment.

Categories face, uneasy

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Cowboy

The body leans back and the crotch is clearly visible.body language The Cowboy

Self-confidence The person feels very safe in what he/she is doing.
“Come – if you dare!”

Explanation
The presentation of the crotch is an act of dominance and challenges the other. At the same time, it is a sexual signal that is deemed inappropriate in most cultures.

Categories body, easy, dominant, territorial

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Roof

The finger tips touch and the hands and form a triangle.body language The Roof

Self-confidence and Sovereignty The person is convinced of what he/she says and does.
“The situation is as follows…”

Interest The person listens closely, yet preserves a professional distance.
“Your statements are very well thought out.”

Explanation
There are two forms of the Roof. If the fingers point upwards, the person is probably speaking. If they are pointing downwards the person is listening. Women often use the gesture around the waist level. Body language trainers recommended this pose to people who have trouble positioning their hands. German Chancellor Angela Merkel often poses like this in photos.

Categories arms/hands, easy

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Hip Stem

The hands touch the hip, while all fingers are visible in the front.body language The Hip Stem

Dominance and Aggression The person has no fear and claims authority.
“This is my turf!”

Explanation
This posture makes the person appear wider. It comes across as aggressive and should only be used rarely. Yet, the gesture emphasizes authority. If the fingers and thumbs point downwards, the meaning is weakened.

Categories body, dominant, territorial

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Turtle

The person crouches with the shoulders pulled up.body language The Turtle

Insecurity and Fear The person has little self-confidence and does not want to attract attention.
“Please let me disappear now.”

Explanation
We make ourselves small, avoid eye contact and limit our movements to a minimum, if we want to appear invisible. The head is protected by this shrunk posture. This gesture appears mostly with people who have low self-esteem. For example, shoplifters or ill-prepared speakers exhibit this body language.

Categories body, uneasy, submissive,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

OK Sign

Thumb and index finger touch, while the other three fingers are spread apart.body language OK Sign

Western Culture Everything is OK or if a speaker wants to emphasize a point.

France Zero.

Japan Change (of money).

Brazil, Spain and Turkey Inappropriate gesture.

Explanation
This gesture shows how different body language can be perceived around the world.

Categories arms/hands

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Open Hands

The person opens arms, such that palms and fingers are visible.body language The Open Hands

Openness and Honesty The person wants to show that he/she can be trusted.
“Look, I have nothing to hide.”

Explanation
Many people find it difficult to lie when showing their palms. The gesture exposes vulnerable parts of the body. Thus, it shows trust in the other person. For example, a legal defender would make his/her palms visible in the courtroom. Use this gesture in presentations and sales.
Caution: This does not apply if the shoulders are pulled up.

Categories arms/hands, open

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Double Handshake

During the handshake, the left hand touches the other’s hand, wrist or forearm.body language The Double Handshake

Trust The person wants to strengthen the personal bond.
“I am sincere.”

or Dominance The person takes the lead.
“Trust me, I will lead you.”

Explanation
Touches strengthen the bond between two people. The extra hand shall emphasize the intimacy of the relationship. When touching the other, the person shows affection – but also dominance. On average the handshake becomes longer when touching. The double handshake is often used by politicians and sales men. The gesture enters the intimate space and should therefore only be used with friends.

Categories arms/hands, dominant, territorial

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Scribbler

The person doodles or draws without a particular goal.body language The Scribbler

Boredom The person has no interest in the current topic or has tuned out completely.
“I would like to do something else now.”

Explanation
Change the subject or end the conversation. Sometimes it is just fatigue that prevents us from attentive listening. Research found that mechanical acts such as scribbling, help us focus.

Categories arms/hands

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Interlock

The person crosses his/her arms and blocks the chest and stomach.body language The Interlock

Distance and Defense The person has a distant attitude towards a person or situation.
“You can’t expect me to believe that.”

Restraint The person listens to the matter, but is not yet ready to act.
“We’ll see how things develop.”

Explanation
We protect our bodies from danger by building a shield. This self-hug soothes and prevents us from acting rash. If hands or fists are clenched, they reinforce the defensive meaning.
Caution: Crossed arms are not always a defensive reaction. Depending on the situation, they can be relaxing or caused by cold. If the hands are eased, it is only a ‘soft barrier’. If the hands are tense, it shows the greater displeasure.

Categories body, uneasy,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Upper Grip

The hand touches the upper chest, the jugular or the neck.body language The Upper Grip

Discomfort The person feels insecure.
“This situation makes me uncomfortable.”

Explanation
The neck is a very vulnerable area. We protect it by pulling up the shoulders or placing our hands in front. Men grab the neck more forcefully than women.

Categories arms/hands, uneasy

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

Spaces

Each situation requires a different distance to the other person.body language Spaces

Distance 0-15cm (~5″) -> very close intimate space
15cm – 45cm (5-15″) -> intimate space
45cm-1.20m (15″-4ft) -> personal space
1,20m – 3.60m (4ft-12ft) -> social space
>3.6m (>12ft) -> public space

Explanation
When looking at space between people, the rotation of the bodies towards each other plays a big role. We have no problem to stand next to someone that is 30cm (~10″) away. However, if the person faces us completely at this distance, we start feeling uneasy.
The ‘intimate space’ is reserved for people who are close to us, such as your partner or family. We allow people we like and know well, such as family or very good friends, into this space. In the ‘personal space’ we interact with friends or colleagues, e.g. at a party. In the ‘social space’ we communicate with people, we have a neutral attitude towards, for example sales man. In the ‘public space’, most people feel safest. E.g., this distance is common in lectures or presentations.

Categories body, territorial

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Palm

The palms face upwards or downwards.body language The Palm

Submissiveness (Palm up) The person asks for a favor.
“You have to believe me.”

or Dominance (Palm down) The person claims a right.
“We will do it this way!”

Explanation
Palms facing upwards have a pleading and inviting character. The downward hand is giving and dominant.

Categories arms/hands

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Escort

The person ushers the other or offers a seat.body language The Escort

Sovereignty The person takes the role of the host and lays out the rules.
“Please sit here.”

Explanation
The dominant effect increases if the person touches the other. This establishes who is in charge. Generally, it is good if the host takes the leading role.

Categories arms/hands, dominant, territorial

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Seesaw

The feet teeter stronger than before.body language The Seesaw

Nervousness, Excitement or Impatience This self-soothing gesture shows that the person is currently faced with a unpleasant thought or question.
“I do not know how to respond.”

Explanation
Many people are not aware of what they do with their feet. Yet, feet are a good indicator for the mood of a person. People usually wiggle because they are impatient or bored. If a the wiggling becomes stronger when touching a particularly topic, this indicates that the person feels unpleasant.

Categories legs/feet, uneasy

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Laydown

The palms are spread-out on the table.body language The Laydown

Possessiveness and Dominance The person wants to establish his/her authority.
“I’m in charge!”

Explanation
The hands claim ownership. Through spreading the fingers, the hands appear larger. The person takes up more space and shows authority.

Categories arms/hands, dominant, territorial

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Watch Watcher

The person looks at his/her watch or a clock in the room.body language The Watch Watcher

Impatience or Boredom The person wants to end the conversation.
“I have better to do. Let me go.”

Explanation
The person shows that he/she has no time. The person is unable or unwilling to perceive more information. Take the initiative: Change the subject or end the conversation.

Categories body

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Adjuster

The person straightens the tie.body language The Adjuster

Discomfort The person feels insecure or prepares for an important meeting.
“I’m nervous.”

or Desire The person dresses up for the other(s).
“Look, I am beautiful.”

Explanation
The context is important for the meaning. If the person is stressed, the gesture covers the sensitive jugular notch and the neck. Then, it is a defensive pose. In the case of flirtation or an interview, we would like to look the best.

Categories body

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Patrolman

The hand holds the other wrist behind the back.body language The Patrolman

Authority and Self-assurance The person walks through his/her terrain fearlessly.
“Nothing can harm me.”

Distance The person monitors the situation, but does not want physical contact with the other – usually subordinate – persons.
“Please do not touch me.”

Explanation
This gesture is found with high-level personal, such as high-ranking police officers, military personnel or bosses. They pace out their territory and inspect. The vulnerable front demonstrates that the person has no fear. The hands on the back offer little opportunity to engage in physical contact with them.

Categories arms/hands, easy, , territorial

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Eye Wiper

One or more finger rubbing over the upper or lower eyelid.body language The Eye Wiper

Discomfort The person feels uncomfortable and wants to avoid/flee the situation.
“Can we please talk about something else?”

Explanation
The person interrupts eye contact because he/she wants to avoid hearing or seeing.

Categories face, uneasy,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Self-Hug

The arms are folded, while the hands embrace the body and the thumbs point upwards.body language The Self-Hug

Defense and Self-confidence The person feels secure in what he/she does and does not allow arguments to come near him/her.
“Don’t even try to attack what I am saying.”

Explanation
This ambiguous signal shows a negative attitude. The thumbs show dominance. Give the person something for the hands or walk with him/her. This may relax the situation.

Categories arms/hands,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Leg Barrier

The person crosses the legs while the rest of the body is tense and/or the arms are folded.body language The Leg Barrier

Defense and Protection The person feels insecure.
“I feel backed into a corner.”

Explanation
If a person suddenly crosses his/her legs or wraps them around a chair, the person feels uncomfortable. This closed posture shows the need for protection and support. This pose is often accompanied by the hands pressing on his/her knees or holding on to a chair. Give the person something in his/her hand or put them in motion, so that they can relax.

Categories legs/feet, uneasy

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Wrist

The wrist shows openly.body language The Wrist

Sympathy and Trust The person likes the other and has a positive attitude towards him/her.
“I would like to learn more about you.”

Explanation
Wrists are – especially for women – very sensitive body parts. Vital veins run through them. The gesture shows openness and indicates that the person is attracted to the other. The Wrist can be interpreted as flirting signal.

Categories arms/hands, easy, open

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Armshake

During the handshake, the left hand touches the other’s elbow, forearm or shoulder.body language The Armshake

Trust The person wants to strengthen the personal bond.
“We are good friends.”

Dominance The person raises his/her status.
“You are beneath me.”

Explanation
With this gesture the person tries to establish trust in a dominant manner. It is only acceptable between close friends. Using this gesture with customers, may cause distrust and you may commit social suicide. As an answer to this dominant gesture, you can either reciprocate the touch or use the left hand to push the other person back slightly and then stand sideways.

Categories arms/hands, dominant, territorial

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Pen Nibbler

An object, such as a pen or lens, is lead to the mouth.body language The Pen Nibbler

Hovering or Concentration The person is reflecting what best decision or solution would be.
“I am not convinced yet.”

Explanation
We create comfort by touching the mouth with items. This also applies to cigarettes. This gesture can be traced back to sucking on the mother’s chest.
Give the person more information or a different perspective to aid the decision.

Categories face,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Forward Lean

The person leans forward while the arms are open.body language The Forward Lean

Agreement and Sympathy The person has a positive attitude towards the other. He/She likes what the other says.
“I like to listen to you.”

Explanation
We lean towards people and things we like. If the other mirrors this behavior, it shows harmony. The opposite occurs when we dislike someone or have little interest in something.

Categories body, easy, open

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Shrug

Both shoulders are raised up evenly.body language The Shrug

Unawareness or Ignorance The person does not understand or does not bother.
“I know nothing about that.”

Explanation
There are two versions of the shrug: Both shoulders raise uniformly towards the ears; or the shrug is uneven. The first version suggests sincerity, the second may involve deception.

Categories body

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Leg Cross

The person crosses legs relaxedly. One shoe may be tilted upwards.body language The Leg Cross

Confidence The person is relaxed and feels comfortable.
“Everything’s fine.”

Explanation
Crossed legs prevent us from escaping quickly. We only block ourselves if we feel secure. Usually, the rest of the body shows a relaxed attitude.
Criminals may take this pose to pretend that everything is fine.

Categories legs/feet, easy

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

Thumbs Up

The hand clenches to a fist and the thumb points up.body language Thumbs Up

Western Culture Super! or as a sign for hitchhiking or the number one.
“Can I hitch a ride?”

Mediterranean Inappropriate gesture similar to the American ‘two fingers up’.
“You can lick my …”

Japan Five.

Explanation
Depending on the country this gesture has different meanings. This generally applies to body language and here in particular.

Categories arms/hands

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Barrier

The person holds an object between himself/herself and the other.body language The Barrier

Defense and Protection The person feels insecure.
“I would prefer a little more distance between us.”

or Shyness The person feels uncomfortable.
“Take it easy, I need time to assess the situation.”

Explanation
The object acts as a barrier. It may be a briefcase, a chair, a laptop or a coffee cup. Sometimes a situation arises such that an object is in the way, but nobody put it there on purpose. Remove the obstacle in the way to create a more personal setting.

Categories body, uneasy,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Plucker

The person tugs cuffs, sleeves or other clothing.body language The Plucker

Nervousness This self-soothing gesture shows that the person is insecure.
“I’m anxious.”

Explanation
The mechanical act occupies the hands and distracts from the situation.

Categories arms/hands, uneasy

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Four

One leg crosses the other. The ankle lies on the thigh.body language The Four

Self-confidence The person feels safe and challenges the other or arguments against the other’s point.
“Let’s see who has the better arguments!”

Explanation
The gesture challenges the other. Sometimes one or two hands grab the crossed leg. The gesture mixes self-confidence with dominance and relaxation. In Asia and Arabia, showing the shoe sole is considered rude.

Categories legs/feet, easy, dominant

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Sphinx

The person touches the nose with a finger.body language The Sphinx

Skepticism The person is uncertain about the matter at hand.
“I am not convinced by what I am saying or you are telling me.”

or Calming If the person is emotionally involved, he/she wants to calm himself/herself down.
“I don’t want to see or hear this.”

Explanation
If a person feels uncomfortable – e.g. when deceiving -, the breathing speed and heart rate increases. As a result, the blood vessels in the nose expand. The tingling can trigger the touch. The gesture is an indicator of discomfort – it does not proof lying!

Categories face, uneasy,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Lint Picker

The caller interrupts eye contact and removes real or imaginary lint.body language The Lint Picker

Rejection and Reservation The person does not like what he/she hears or thinks that there is no place for his/her point of view. Alternatively, he/she dismisses an argument figuratively.
“I don’t want to hear this.”

Explanation
The lint picker is found when a person does not agree with the other person. The person holds back expressing his/her opinion. Encourage the person to say what he/she thinks.

Categories arms/hands

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Blow

The person gently smacks the head or forehead.body language The Blow

Realization The person notices a mistake or realizes that he/she forgot something.
“Oh no, what have I done.”

Explanation
The gesture often occurs with honest people. The slight blow to the head is like a symbolic self-punishment. The blow shall re-establish order. A blow to the back of the head or very vigorous rubbing shows that the incident bothers the person.

Categories face

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Pointer

The finger points at a person while holding eye contact.body language The Pointer

Aggression The person attacks someone non-verbally.
“This is your fault!”

Explanation
Nobody likes it when being pointed at. This gesture can lead to aggression and fights. Avoid this harsh gesture.

Categories arms/hands, dominant

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Half Barrier

One hand holds the arm or the other hand.body language The Half Barrier

Defense and Protection The person feels insecure in the situation.
“What is going to happen?”

or Self-doubt The person does not feel up to the current – socially tense – situation.
“I’m not used to that much attention.”

Explanation
Holding one’s hand helps in difficult situations. It is reassuring and reminds us of childhood days, when our parents protected us. The gesture is often seen when someone enters a new group or receives an award. In this situation, the unexpected attention causes discomfort.

Categories arms/hands, uneasy, submissive,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Sprinter

The person leans forward while sitting. One leg is pulled back and the hands rest on the chair or the knees.body language The Sprinter

Preparedness The person has a negative attitude and is ready to end the conversation.
“Let’s move on!”

Explanation
Also other signs, like packing up, grabbing for the jacket or collecting the handbag, suggest that the person wants to go somewhere else. If you recognize this gesture, take the initiative to end the conversation. This way, you stay in charge.

Categories body

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Mirror

People take similar poses and mirror movements.body language The Mirror

Harmony People have the same opinion and want to reach an agreement.
“We are on the same page.”

Explanation
When mirroring, there is a dominant person who leads and a person that follows. Both synchronize their movements. Subconsciously, trust is created among the two, because the other is ‘as I am’. The opposite is the case if the body language differs greatly.

Categories body, easy, open

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Bow Back

The head is slightly tilted to the side.body language The Bow Back

Confidence and Reassurance The person wants to establish harmony.
“Let’s be friends again.”

or Interest The person is interested in the other or the conversation.
“I would like to learn more about it.”

Explanation
The neck is vulnerable. When we bow back, we show that there is no harm coming from us and we submit ourself to the other. Generally, a tilted head shows interest and may as well be a flirt signal. If the person is also bent forward, the feeling is mutual. This gesture is very low in authority.

Categories face, submissive, open

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Pointing Foot

Most of the weight is resting on one leg, while the other foot points in one direction.body language The Pointing Foot

Disinterest The person is not interested in the other person if the foot is turned away.
“I would like go over there.”

Attraction The person interested in the other person, if the foot points there (not shown).
“I find you attractive.”

Interest The person is curious about the topic, if the foot points towards the conversation partner (not shown).
“I would like to learn more about it.”

Explanation
The foot shows the direction, we find interesting. This can be toward or away from a person. In the second case (as depicted), the other person should end the conversation. The foot can also point towards the sky, e.g. during a phone call. This may indicate a good mood.

Categories legs/feet

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Hand of Interest

The closed hand lays on the cheek.body language The Hand of Interest

Interest The person is interested in the subject. He/She appreciates the other person or the topic of conversation.
“Tell me more, I care about this topic.”

Explanation
In most cases, the interested person is sitting upright or leans slightly forward to the other person. Bending forward further, shows more interest in the conversation or the person. The person is literally sitting on the edge of the seat.

Categories face

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Standby

The person leans forward while seated. One leg is pulled back and one hand rests on the thigh.body language The Standby

Preparedness The person has a positive attitude and wants to move on.
“Where can I sign?”

Explanation
The position indicates that we are ready to go. Sales men should pay attention to this sign before they ask for a decision. If this gesture is accompanied by stroking the chin (decision-making), we are ready for the next step.

Categories body

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Mouthguard

The fingers cover the mouthbody language The Mouthguard

Cover or Shyness The hand shall hide is socially undesirable gestures such as yawns or giggles.
“Not everyone should see this.”

Insecurity The person is not sure about what he/she says.
“I can not guarantee that this is true.”

Explanation
Covering the mouth is often used as an indicator for lies. This is mostly true for young children. When growing up, we learn to hide our uncertainty and to avoid this gesture.
Often the person feels obligated to say something, but would rather not. Then the answer is delayed.
Always remove your hand from the mouth when speaking.

Categories face,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Breast Toucher

One or both hands touch the heart or chest.body language The Breast Toucher

Honesty The person wants to show, that you can trust him/her.
“Let’s be honest: You can trust me.”

Explanation
Moving the hands to the chest shall demonstrate sincerity. The gesture is easy to fake and it may be used consciously – for example by sales man. If the gesture is shown as a reaction, the person feels attacked and he wants to reaffirm his/her innocence. You can not draw any conclusions about truthfulness from this gesture.

Categories arms/hands

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Pointing Knee

The legs are crossed and one knee points in a direction.body language The Pointing Knee

Interest The person is interested in the person pointed at.
“I want to learn more (about you).”

Explanation
Our knee shows the direction the person is attracted to. The attraction may be towards a person, an object or an exit. If the knee points away from something/someone, it functions as a barrier.

Categories legs/feet

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Handrub

Hands or fingers are rubbed together.body language The Handrub

Anticipation The person expects a joyful event.
“This is going to be great!”

or Insecurity The person has low self-esteem.
“How can I get out of this mess?”

Explanation
When doing this gesture, we look forward to something. This may as well be at someone else’s expense. Often, the look is unfocused for a moment, as if the person imagines the event.
Caution: Strong rubbing may also mean that the person is cold or under stress.

Categories arms/hands, easy

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Stretch

The person pulls the collar away from the throat.body language The Stretch

Stress or Anger or Constriction The person is emotionally heated.
“I need a cool breeze now.”

Explanation
This gesture is more commonly observed in men. Women may throw back their hair to let the neck breathe. The Stretch is often associated with lies. As if the untruth causes an itch or the difficulty to breath.

Categories arms/hands, uneasy

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Neck Massager

The person massages and squeezes the neck.body language The Neck Massager

Stress The person feels uncomfortable.
“I don’t like this.”

Explanation
This gesture is self-soothing. The largest nerve of the parasympathetic nervous system resides around the stimulated area. This nerve lowers the heart rate when stimulated.

Categories face, uneasy,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Chin Stroker

The hand strokes the chin.body language The Chin Stroker

Insecurity The person needs time to consider the facts. He/she does not want to respond immediately.
“Let me think about this…”

or Stress The person is agitated and soothes himself/herself with this mechanical movement.
“This is too much!”

Evaluation The person thinks about the situation/decision.
“I am about to decide.”

Explanation
The intensity of the strike makes a difference. Repeated strokes with heavy pressure indicate stress; soft strokes show insecurity. Possibly, the person is faced with a decision and tries make out the right answer.

Categories face

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Prayer

The hands are folded and pressed against the body.body language The Prayer

Self-confidence The person is confident and has no intention to change his/her mind.
“This is where I stand and I will not move!”

Anger or Concern The negative feelings are compensated by strong embracing oneself.
“This can not be happening!”

or Restraint The person is still assessing the situation and holds back to avoid rash actions.
“We’ll see how things will develop.”

Explanation
There are three different positions: hands in front of the face, hands placed on the table or hands in front of the crotch. The higher the hands are held, the stronger the signal. Give the person something in his/her hand or bring him/her to do something else.

Categories arms/hands,

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Handshake

The person shakes hands with someone else.body language The Handshake

Greeting, Farewell or Completion There are three different kinds of handshakes:
The dominant (palm facing down – upper hand),
The equal (palm perpendicular) and
The humble (palms facing up – underhand).

Explanation
In the past, management books recommended the dominant handshake. Today, this behavior is deemed too aggressive. Therefore the equal handshake is preferred. During this handshake the other should feel that there is a counterpart, but the other’s hand shall not be squeezed too hard. A lax handshake (also called ‘dead fish’) is only acceptable in Asia, where minimal physical contact is preferred. For photos, politicians like to stand on the right of their partner, so the ‘upper hand’ is more visible in the photo. Thus, the status shown is higher.

Categories arms/hands

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.

The Tap

The fingers drum on a table or the person’s body.body language The Tap

Impatience The person wants to be somewhere else or is under time pressure.
“Please make your point now.”

Frustration The person would like to interrupt the person speaking.
“Stop talking. I don’t like what you’re saying.”

Explanation
The non-verbal sound sends a clear signal of frustration. The louder and faster the knocking, the more the person feels stress. Change the subject or end the conversation.

Categories arms/hands

This is one out of 63 gestures from the body language trainer.