Boris Johnson, Donald Trump and Matt Hancock may not be your favorite answers when you think of famous bodybuilders.
But you may be surprised to learn that conservative men are perceived as physically stronger than liberals, scientists say.
The University of Arkansas-led research conducted four experiments to study the link between political orientation and chiseled physiques.
It turns out that men with greater upper body strength were considered more right-leaning, which experts link to their increased competitiveness.
“It’s always possible that politicians are relying on these stereotypes when making their decisions, but I don’t necessarily have data to support these claims,” Dr. Mitch Brown, an evolutionary psychologist and lead author, told MailOnline.
Boris Johnson pumps iron in 2020 at the Gym in his South Ruislip constituency
“That said, physically strong men are indeed more likely to espouse conservative views (or at least what we consider conservative with our modern popular parlance).
“Consider political ideology as a means to achieve your personal interests. »
As part of the research, the experts recruited 203 students, including 153 women, 49 men and one “anonymous” person.
These participants were asked to guess the political views of eight men while ranking their strengths.
The scientists also used scenario questions to assess this, asking participants to select men most likely to oppose higher taxes, abortion or immigration for example.
The results revealed that conservative men were perceived as stronger overall, perhaps due to the innate competitiveness of right-wing politics.
However, weak men were seen as neither conservative nor liberal, raising uncertainty about these trends.
“Strongmen have considerable bargaining power that historically would have made it easier to win competitions for resources,” Dr. Brown continued.
“When they gained access to resources, they moved up the hierarchical ladder and thus codified the social norms of competition in which they had a competitive advantage.
Scientists say that more right-wing figures, like Donald Trump and Matt Hancock, are perceived to be the physically strongest.
Pictured: Two of the samples provided by the study, the one on the left marked as “strong” and the other as “weak.”
Participants were asked to rate whether these bodies were equally “strong” or “weak” on a scale of one to seven.
“Physically weaker people did not have this power and would conversely favor less competitive group norms.”
Despite this, some clinical psychologists – notably Dr. Gurpreet Kaur and Dr Louise Goddard-Crawley – have doubts about the validity of these claims.
“Although political beliefs are shaped by a complex interplay of personal experiences, values and sociocultural factors, it is crucial to recognize that they are only associations and do not imply causation” , said Dr Kaur.
“People of varying political orientations may possess different degrees of physical strength, and this is not a reliable indicator of their political beliefs.”
Dr Goddard-Crawley added: “Human behavior is incredibly complex and influenced by a wide range of factors, including genetics, upbringing, personal experiences and more.
“Attempting to explain political direction solely on the basis of physical force oversimplifies the problem.
“Perceptions of physical strength can be subjective and influenced by cultural or personal biases. What a person considers “strong” or “weak” can vary greatly.
The authors acknowledge this as a limitation and write: “Our results simply indicate the presence of a stereotype for formidable men, but do not determine whether the display of formidable strength is a veridical index of ideology.” »
But Dr Brown also told MailOnline: ‘Correlation does not imply causation, yes, but this particular study is not about a correlation.
“This is ultimately a study to see if there is a lay heuristic that strongmen are conservative (i.e. a stereotype). There may be some truth to these stereotypes.
“Future research should evaluate the previously identified association between strength and conservatism while seeing whether perceivers can accurately track people’s ideology through this morphology.”
READ MORE: Attractive people are more likely to be conservative because it’s ‘too easy’ for them: Scientists say they are ‘blind’ to life’s struggles
Scientists know that being attractive influences many aspects of a person’s life, including how much they earn and what they like to do in their free time.
A new study now claims that beauty can sway a person to the right.
Research argues that attractive people are more likely to be conservative because they are “blind” to the struggles of those who are less fortunate.
THE study was conducted by Dr. Rolfe Daus Peterson, a political scientist at Susquehanna University and Dr. Carl Palmar, an assistant professor of politics at Illinois State University.
The researchers say there is “good reason to believe that individuals’ physical attractiveness can alter their political values and worldviews.”
Now, a new study says beauty can sway a person to the right (Photo: Donald Trump)