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Do tall guys really have all the luck when it comes to landing women? Or if have a little extra love hanging around your midsection, does that detract a little extra from your love life?
Chapman University sought to answer these questions and more in their latest body of research. Not to jump the gun, but the number of sexual partners you have is relative to your height and body mass.
In the study, researchers asked 60,058 heterosexual men and women (mean age: 37) to report their height, weight, and how many sexual partners they’ve had. Overall, 58 percent of men and 56 percent of women reported having more than five partners, while 29 percent of men and 23 percent of women reported having more than 14 partners. On average, men and women aged 30-22 said they had slept with eight different people.
Some of the findings weren’t that surprising. Men who are “average to extremely tall” reported having one to three more sexual partners than did men who are “shorter than average.” (The researchers didn’t specify a height range, but you get the gist: “Short guys” typically fall below 5’8”, average guys typically hover around 5’10”, and tall guys stretch above 6’0”.) Tall or average guys had about seven sexual partners, whereas shorter guys reported about five.
“Research has repeatedly shown than women prefer men who are relatively taller than they are,” writes study author David Frederick, Ph.D. “It is possible that for most women there is a certain minimal threshold of height, after which they will consider a male as a potential sex partner, and thus men above that height will end up with similar numbers of sex partners.”
The sex experience of heavier guys, however, was a little more surprising. Men with a midrange BMI—so guys who are normal or even overweight—had the most extensive repertoire of past and present lovers, the study said. Important caveat, though: The medical classification of “overweight” doesn’t necessarily correlate to our social perceptions of what’s “overweight.” The study authors didn’t provide give any figures or specific BMIs, but they did provide this colorful example: “George W. Bush was medically classified as overweight during his presidency, but few people would perceive him as overweight.”
Bottom line: Men who appear “larger, more powerful, or more generally athletic” have more notches in their bedposts. So hey, if you needed some motivation to get your ass to the gym, take note. (And for the shorter guys out there, remember that a sparkling personality and a good head of hair carries plenty of cachet in a woman’s eyes.)