There have been many moments in your life where you’ve encountered or even displayed an arm barrier. Arms crossed WP1Perhaps, you’ve wondered like me what each type of “arms crossed” gesture means.  You may be surprised to know that there even exists well thought out reasons for each individual arm crossing technique or gesture. It’s crucial to understand each type, because not all arm crosses mean the same thing in terms of body language.

Before we get started talking about the reinforced arm cross, it’s important to remember our basic ruleswhile reading body language that we discussed in the very first video. Thank you, Cael Telford for reminding us of those rules! It’s especially important to read body language in context. Arm crossing could mean that the person is feeling cold.

The reinforced arm cross gesture is displayed as a full-arm cross with clenched fists underneath the elbows. This particular cluster is sometimes referred to as the “fists-clenched-arms-crossed” gesture. (Creative right?) What does this body language tell us? What is the person trying to tell us non verbally? This type of body language or non verbal shows us hostility, as well as defensiveness. Of course, reading body language in clusters is an important thing to do when seeing this type of non verbal gesture.

arms crossed WP2

Is the reinforced arm cross in combination with any of these things?

  • tight-lipped smile
  • clenched jaw and teeth
  • red flushing of the face

If you do see some of the things listed above with the arm cross, you can feel more confident about an altercation brewing. By looking for these things in combination with the reinforced arm cross we can further evaluate what the person is feeling in the given situation. Reading body language is all about picking up multiple signals. In order to be more accurate you have to take in more than 1 or 2 non verbal gestures. By learning each individual gesture and its meaning, you’ll be one step closer to mastering body language.

Are you more of a visual learner? Check out the video below!

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One thought on “How to Read Body Language: Reinforced Arm Cross

  1. Hi Caddy,Just want to say, im pleased to see you talking about clusters of gestures. Way too many people just talk about one single gesture, which, as you know, means little by itself. You seem to give a much more informative kind of article.

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