Meghan Provost at Queen’s University has conducted a study testing correlations between women’s fertility and the sexual signals that they give off by their walks. Surprisingly, women who were at the most fertile periods of their menstrual cycles had the least “sexy” walks (according to the male volunteers who rated them), with smaller hip movements and knees closer together.
This would seem to contradict recent research that suggests men are more attracted to ovulating women, but Provost says the results are compatible. According to her, the previous research tested signals that can only be perceived at close range, like pheromones and facial expressions, whereas a walk can be detected from a distance. The idea is that if a woman’s going to send out her pheromones during ovulation, she wants to see the guy up close, because if everything goes right he might end up being her baby daddy. However, if he’s only close enough to see her walk (which means she can’t get a good look at him, and he might be “unappealing”), she’ll give off the sexy vibe, but only when she’s not ovulating. That way, if he “forces his attentions on her,” she probably won’t get pregnant.
Hold up. So women do the sexy walk in order to attract potential rapists, but make sure to do it when they’re least fertile so that they can just be raped, instead of raped and impregnated? It’s probably a good thing that Provost is “trying to put as big a question mark as [she] can around this hypothesis,” because we’re not really buying this one.
Photo by Ginto from Flickr.