Washington, July 27 : American body movement analysts have cast light on what Republican presidential candidate John McCain and his Democratic counterpart Barack Obama's body language reveals about them.
They say that the way McCain stands firmly and holds onto the sides of a podium represent stability, while Obama has a forward-looking gaze and strolls about in a relaxed fashion during public appearances.
The experts add that both presidential candidates share an introspective quality that may make them strong leaders, each in his way.
"They represent very different ways of relating," Live Science quoted Karen Bradley, a professor at the University of Maryland who has served as a media consultant for outlets such as MSNBC's "Hardball" and The Washington Post, as saying.
Bradley and Karen Studd, a professor at George Mason University in Washington, D.C., also say that McCain and Obama take different approaches to gesturing.
They say that McCain uses directional gestures that suggest bridging a gap, while Obama's shaping gestures that suggest accommodation.
The analysts have also noticed that McCain sometimes adopts a right-left style of walking where he shifts his weight, which contrasts with Obama's more centered movement where he swings the opposite arm with the opposite leg.
They believe that Obama's free flow approach may have its advantages, especially when it comes to public appearances where the candidates face hard questions.
"John McCain is ill at ease a lot, and Obama is rarely ill at ease although he's put on the spot. John McCain sometimes looks like he's looking for the door, so he needs to work on that," Bradley said.
Bradley and Studd also paid attention to the relationship between the candidates and their wives, and observed that John and Cindy McCain often appeared separately, or else Cindy tended to stand in the background.
"John McCain is a solitary guy. Cindy's making her own appearances, so we don't get to see what their marriage is like," Bradley said.
Barack and Michelle Obama, on the other hand, have often shared the stage together and demonstrated a team mentality.
"You'll see Michelle flow into the foreground at times," Studd said.
McCain and Obama share a surprising similarity too, say the analysts.
"Both are very private, which is interesting because people wouldn't think that of them. There's a lot going on inside that we don't quite see," Bradley observed.
The experts refused to suggest people whom to vote based on their preferences.
"We're not talking about the issues, because people can make up their own mind about issues," Bradley said.
They also conced that people with opposing views could interpret the same body language differently.
"Someone who wants a candidate who is going to be tenacious and stay the course, they're going to read the stability in (McCain's) movement signature as a positive thing. Someone who wants change is going to see that as immovable," Studd said.
"We're all trained observers, because that's how we interact with the world before we developed language," Studd added.