Fast Walker Personality: What It Says About You

This fast walker personality study reveals that there is a relationship between how a person walks and their personality.

This fast walker personality study reveals that there is a relationship between how a person walks and their personality.

Fast walkers are more likely to have personalities that are extraverted, conscientious and open to new experiences.

Naturally, though, with age, people tend to walk more slowly.

However, those high in extraversion, conscientiousness and openness to new experience did not slow down as much as they got older.

The study’s authors conclude:

“This study provides robust evidence that walking speed in adulthood reflects, in part, the individual’s personality.”

Fast walker personality study

The results come from over 15,000 people between 25 and 100 years old.

They were given personality tests and their walking style was assessed from their usual gait.

Fast walking was most strongly linked to two personality traits, the authors write:

“Extraversion and conscientiousness were the most consistent personality correlates of walking speed.

Active and enthusiastic individuals and those with self-discipline and organization walked faster at follow-up and declined less in gait speed over time in the HRS.”

People with neurotic personalities, though, tended to walk more slowly.

Much research has already linked walking slowly to all sorts of negative outcomes, the study’s authors explain:

“…slower gait is predictive of a range of deleterious outcomes, including poor mental health, higher risk of incident functional
limitations and disability, impaired cognition and incident dementia, and ultimately higher mortality risk.”

So, stop dawdling there on the sidewalk!

The study was published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science (Stephan et al., 2017).


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This site is all about scientific research into how the mind works.

It’s mostly written by psychologist and author, Dr Jeremy Dean.

I try to dig up fascinating studies that tell us something about what it means to be human.

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Author: Jeremy Dean

Psychologist, Jeremy Dean, PhD is the founder and author of PsyBlog. He holds a doctorate in psychology from University College London and two other advanced degrees in psychology. He has been writing about scientific research on PsyBlog since 2004. He is also the author of the book "Making Habits, Breaking Habits" (Da Capo, 2013) and several ebooks.