Will & Kate’s Body Language On Their Train Tour Was A Little Stiff

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2020 has been a difficult year for everyone. It makes sense that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince William and Kate Middleton, hopped aboard the Royal Train to spread some holiday cheer to frontline workers, teachers, children, and many others who've had to cope with immense hardship due to the coronavirus pandemic. Will and Kate traveled 1250 miles from Dec. 6 to Dec. 8, and made stops in England, Scotland and Wales. And although this definitely not their first work trip together, Prince William and Kate Middleton’s body language on their train tour suggests they may have felt less comfortable in public this time around — which is completely understandable given the current health risks that come with traveling.

According to Patti Wood, body language expert and author of Snap: Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language, and Charisma, and human behavior expert Susan Constantine-Perfido, MPsy, Will and Kate seemed polite and reserved, but not particularly at ease being out and about. Considering they've likely been spending most of this year at home like the rest of us, it's easy to see why being back in the public eye could be a little uncomfortable. Here's an in-depth look at what both experts had to say about the royal couple's dynamic on their most recent tour.

Will is being protective of Kate.
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It's good to see that both Will and Kate are making a point to observe social distancing measures as they greet Deputy Lord Lieutenant Sandra Cumming during one of their stops. That said, the Prince's physical cues reveal he has his guard up. "William has his hand on his tummy," Constantine tells Elite Daily. "This means he is trying to be cordial and reserved. It also means he may be feeling guarded."

Wood also points out that Will is taking the more assertive role in the interaction, while Kate hangs back. "The Prince is taking the lead and being protective of Kate, who stops further behind him," Wood tells Elite Daily. "Look at the way he leans over to his left in front of Kate so she doesn’t have to approach and is shielded from the interaction. He's making sure she is safe."

They're maintaining a professional distance.

As they make their way through a crowded train station, Constantine points out that they both appear to be hyper-focused and aware of their surroundings. "They are walking far apart out of the intimate zone of distance," notes Wood. "I like that their feet are moving in sync, showing they are in the same rhythm of movement, but I don’t like how his hands are curled and tense in a way that isn't giving or receiving comfort from her as they move through this public space during the pandemic." Constantine explains that their lack of hand-holding could be an intentional display of professionalism.

Their conversation appears intense.
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As the duo engages in conversation while Will casually leans against a railing, they might not be as relaxed as they appear. "You can tell by the muscle tension between his brows that it’s an intense conversation," says Constantine. "She is being demure and respectfully listening. And you can see that they are purposefully trying to shut down their emotions and appear stoic." Although we have no idea what they were actually talking about, their body language indicates a serious moment.

Getting back to business as usual is going to be a process for just about anyone who has been home for most of the year. While Will and Kate didn't seem like they were super comfortable, they also didn't appear to be overly fearful. After all, this tour was far from their first rodeo, and ultimately they managed to do what they do best — remain cool, calm, and collected.

Experts cited

Patti Wood, body language expert and author

Susan Constantine-Perfido, MPScy, human behavior expert