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The Way You Walk Can Increase Your Chances of Being Mugged, Study Finds

Update Date: Nov 11, 2013 09:02 AM EST

If you want to avoid being mugged, instead of taking self-defense classes learn to walk more confidently.

BBC explored the science of victim selection recently and came up with evident results. The victim selection by a criminal is not at all random and they choose their target based on the way they walk.

There are specific and unfortunate people in the areas who are picked out repeatedly. In 1980s, the Journal of Communication published and article in which two researchers found those special movements that made people more vulnerable to violent attacks. They set up video cameras in those high assault areas in New York City. People walking over the course were filmed three consecutive mornings.

Those recordings were then showed to violent prisoners and asked their priority in order to attack. Their favorite prey turned out to be old women, followed by old men. The researchers concluded that factors like their upper body movement, tempo, stride length could give clue to attackers as how vulnerable they were.

Later in 2000 a new technology was used to study the same. It was the point light walker, used by a British social scientist to isolate the gait. They also asked the same thing to the volunteers but not prisoners. The results were exactly similar.

Five years back a rather new study was performed whose findings were written in the Journal of Nonverbal Behavior. Scientists wrote“slow walkers with a short stride length” were more likely targets for random sexual assault. “Fashionably groomed and physically attractive walkers” were also the top picks.

However there are ways though tough that can help you walk like the least vulnerable people. According to Lucy Johnston, a British social scientist, less vulnerable people take long strides relative to their height, turn their pelvis with each step, move their whole body, swing not lift their feet, show a range of arm movement, have high energy.

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