Physical Aggression Measured By A Finger

On the lighter side of scientific research for a moment, Canadian researchers have discovered a link between the length of a man's fingers and how physically aggressive he is. Apparently, the shorter the index finger is compared to the ring finger, the more aggressive he will be, according to University of Alberta (UA) scientists. The same, however, wasn't true for hostile behavior or verbal abuse.

Researchers studied and measured the fingers of 300 UA students to investigate the correlation of various emotional tendencies with finger length. Scientist believe the link between the two heretofore unrelated characteristics may be related to testosterone exposure in the womb. In fact, the connection between male testosterone exposure in the womb and finger length is directly related and well known.

The ring and index fingers of a woman are usually of equal length. On the other hand, a man's ring finger tends to a lot longer than his index finger. Previous studies have identified other interesting, if not far-fetched, links between finger length and one's physical/psychological makeup:

  • Men with long ring fingers and symmetrical hands are a sign of fertility.
  • Women with longer index fingers are more fertile.
  • Boys with shorter ring fingers have a far greater risk of heart attack in early adulthood.

In a followup to this study, researchers are examining hockey players to determine if their finger lengths match up at all with their propensity for aggressive contact and fouls.

This is pretty large stretch by scientists to justify how one's genetic makeup may affect one's health. Remember folks, genes are merely dumb storage facilities that do very little to influence our health. Fact is, it's the expression of our genes that's most important, and their expression is altered by our emotional influences. Otherwise, you'd be helpless to do anything about your health, which, of course, isn't true at all.

Biological Psychology Volume 68, Issue 3, March 2005, Pages 215-222

BBC News March 4, 2005

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