Posture and Performance (08-08-18)

Peper and colleagues studied how posture influences academic performance and their findings should encourage the development of design options that make good posture more likely. The research team reports that “Half the students [mean age 23.5] sat in an erect position [shoulders relaxed and back] while the other half sat in a slouched position and were asked to mentally subtract 7 serially from 964 for 30 seconds. They then reversed the positions before repeating the math subtraction task beginning at 834. They rated the math task difficulty on a scale from 0 (none) to 10 (extreme). The math test was rated significantly more difficult while sitting slouched . . . than while sitting erect. . . .  Participants with the highest test anxiety, math difficulty and blanking out scores (TAMDBOS) rated the math task significantly more difficult in the slouched position . . . as compared to the erect position. . . . clinicians who work with students who have learning difficulty may improve outcome if they include posture changes.”  

Erik Peper, Richard Harvey, Lauren Mason, and I-Mei Lin.  2018.  “Do Better in Math:  How Your Body Posture May Change Stereotype Threat Response.”  NeuroRegulation, vol. 5, no. 2, pp. 67-74, http://dx.doi.org/10.15540/nr.5.2.67