Thursday, September 28, 2006

What Your Finger Length Says About You

Women with ring fingers longer than their index fingers tend to be better at sports, according to a British study (reported by Reuters). At first, this sounded to me like a kind of phrenology (the crackpot science, popularized in the 19th century, which purported to determine one's personality based on the shape of their head). However, after doing a bit of digging, it turns out that there may be a scientific basis for the finding. And it turns out that finger length can tell more than whether or not little sally will turn out to be a tennis star.

According to a study by the University of Bath (
reported by EurekAlert) on the finger length of academics, "the length of fingers is genetically linked to the sex hormones." Short index fingers mean more testosterone. Long index fingers mean more estrogen.

The Bath study found that math and science academics tend to have long index fingers, academics in the humanities tended to have long ring fingers.

The difference in length between ring and index finger is important as well. A small study at Bath showed the smaller the difference between index and ting finger, the higher a person's test scores.

Finger length can indicate other things as well. For example, another article at EurekAlert explains how short ring fingers suggest men will be more "physically aggressive." Index-to-ring finger ratio may indicate sexuality as well. According to a UC Berkley study (
reported by the BBC), "lesbian women have a greater difference in length between their ring finger and index finger than straight women do… the same pattern was also found in homosexual men."


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Pound360 Archive

About Me

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.