Body Language

Knowledge Center



Summary, forum, best practices, expert tips and information sources.

 

Body Language

What is Body Language?

Body language is an umbrella term for the major part of nonverbal communication in which physical behaviors, as opposed to words (verbal/linguistic communication), are used to express or convey a message or information. Typical body language categories are: facial expressions, body postures, gestures, eye movements, touch and the use of space. Body language is also called: "kinesics".


Unlike sign languages, body language does not have a grammar system nor is there an absolute meaning corresponding with a certain movement, so its meaning must be interpreted more broadly and it is insofar not a true formal "language". Interpretations of a particular behavior may vary according to the culture, country or region and time.


There is a controversy on whether body language is universal. Some of it is; a bigger part of it probably isn't. Body language certainly a subset of nonverbal communication and complements verbal communication in social interaction. In fact, nonverbal communication is believed to account for a large part of the information and emotions transmitted during interpersonal interactions, although it is more ambiguous.


Breakdown of Body Language Subcategories

Here is a comprehensive list of the existing subcategories of body language. Note that most of these can be used consciously (see: Impression Management) and inconsciously and voluntary and involuntary.

  • Facial expressions (combinations of eyes, eyebrow, lips, nose and cheek movements)
  • Head and neck signals (nodding, shaking, lowering, raising, tilting of the head)
  • Body postures (sitting, standing, posture and movement of chest/shoulders)
  • Gestures (movements made with hands, arms, fingers, head, legs)
  • Handshakes (typically a greeting ritual)
  • Breathing (deeper and slow versus shallower and more rapid)
  • Oculesics (eye movement, eye behavior and gaze)
  • Haptics (touching, handshakes, holding hands, back slapping, high fives, brushing up against someone, patting someone)
  • Proxemics (spatial distances or zones between people as they interact: Edward T. Hall's famous 4 interpersonal zones: Intimate (< 46cm), Personal (46cm - 1,2m), Social (1.2m - 3,7m), Public (> 3,7m))
  • Tone of voice (high/low, loud/soft, friendly/angry)
  • Attitude (like/dislike, rapport with another person, formal/informal, mirroring and matching)
  • Readiness (readiness to take action, agressiveness, physical or social readiness)
Body Language Special Interest Group


Special Interest Group (6 members)

Forum about Body Language  

The most recent topics about: Body Language.



Best Practices about Body Language

Here you will find the most valuable ideas and practical suggestions.


Expert Tips about Body Language

Here you will find professional advices by experts.


Information Sources about Body Language

Here you will find powerpoints, videos, news, etc. to use in your own lectures and workshops.


Body Language Tips

Giving Presentations, Public Speaking, Nonverbal Communication (...)
 
 
 
 

Communication Essentials: Non-verbal, Verbal and Listening Skills

Communication Skills, Personal Skills, Confidence, Power, Influence, Sincerity, Trust (...)
 
 
 
 

Facial Expressions: Expressions of our DNA

Media, Mirroring, Facial Expressions (...)
 
 
 
 

3 Communication Forms and Their Relevance

Communication, Body Language (...)
 
 
 
 

Compare with: Persuasion Techniques  |  Impression Management  |  Johari Window  |  Forced Compliance  |  Cognitive Dissonance  |  Mirroring and Matching

Special Interest Group Leader

Are you an expert in Body Language? Sign up for free

Link to this knowledge center

Copy this code to your web site:

 

Return to Management Hub: Communication & Skills

More on Management  |  Return to Management Dictionary  | 


This ends our Body Language summary and forum.



About 12manage | Advertising | Link to us / Cite us | Privacy | Suggestions | Terms of Service
2020 12manage - The Executive Fast Track. V15.6 - Last updated: 29-10-2020. All names of their owners.