Ladies, next time you want to impress a crowd in the middle of the dance floor, make sure to swing your hips and move your arms and legs independently of each other - that's what new research says anyway.
Researchers at Northumbria University in the U.K. have identified the components that make an appealing female dancer: hip swing and asymmetrical thigh and arm movements.
"Hip swing is a very feminine trait [and] seems to be very important when judging female gait," Nick Neave, associate professor of psychology at Northumbria University and lead study author, told Seeker. "By swinging your hips more you are displaying your femininity."
Neave added that asymmetrical arm movements are also a sign of a good dancer because they demonstrate certain skills to the viewer.
"If you can move your limbs independently, slightly out of phase and with different gestures and flourishes, then you are showing of a high level of motor control and also perhaps flair, intelligence and creativity," he said.
In order to draw these conclusions, Neave and his team recorded 39 women dancing to a drum beat and then rendered those images as avatars so that no distinguishing features were discernible. They asked 57 men and 143 women to rate the dancing ability of the avatars based on the video, and compared the ratings to measurements of the dancers' moves.
Example of a "good" dancer: