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Durham Research Online
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Red enhances human performance in contests.

Hill, R. A. and Barton, R. A. (2005) 'Red enhances human performance in contests.', Nature., 435 (7040). p. 293.

Abstract

Signals biologically attributed to red coloration in males may operate in the arena of combat sports. Red coloration is a sexually selected, testosterone-dependent signal of male quality in a variety of animals and in some non-human species a male's dominance can be experimentally increased by attaching artificial red stimuli. Here we show that a similar effect can influence the outcome of physical contests in humans — across a range of sports, we find that wearing red is consistently associated with a higher probability of winning. These results indicate not only that sexual selection may have influenced the evolution of human response to colours, but also that the colour of sportswear needs to be taken into account to ensure a level playing field in sport.

Item Type:Article
Full text:Full text not available from this repository.
Publisher Web site:http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/435293a
Record Created:08 Sep 2008
Last Modified:30 Jul 2010 16:15

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