The Association Between Facial Width-to-Height Ratio (fWHR) and Sporting Performances: Evidence From Professional Basketball Players in Japan

Shintaro Sato*, Keita Kinoshita, Koichi Sekino, Haruka Amano, Yoshifumi Bizen, Hirotaka Matsuoka

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Previous research in evolutionary psychology has highlighted the potential role of facial structures in explaining human behavior. The facial width-to-height ratio (fWHR) was found to be associated with testosterone-driven behavioral tendencies like achievement drive, aggression, and sporting success. The current study aimed to replicate such relationships using real-world data (i.e., professional basketball players; N = 482). Achievement drive, aggression, and sporting success were operationalized as field-goal attempts (FGA), the number of fouls committed (Foul), and player performance rating (EFF), respectively. The results indicated that fWHR was significantly associated with FGA and EFF, controlling for minutes of play and body-mass-index. The same results were obtained for separate analyses focusing on outsider players. However, analyses of inside players demonstrated that fWHR was associated only with EFF. The current research further provides empirical evidence supporting the effects of fWHR on achievement drive and sporting successes, although the effect sizes are notably small.

Original languageEnglish
Article number714819
JournalFrontiers in Psychology
Volume12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Aug 18

Keywords

  • achievement drive
  • aggression
  • athletic performance
  • facial structure
  • fWHR

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

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