What to do with your hands in standing interview

What to do with your hands in standing interview post image

Many pageants have standing interview at some point in the judging process. Perhaps the initial interview is done standing. One area of judging may include an onstage question. Standing during interview poses completely different challenges for what to do with your hands because you can’t just put them in your lap. So, what are you supposed to do with them?


Relax them by your side

It really isn’t complicated. Simply let your hands fall naturally at your sides. If you were to look a group of non pageant people, most will be standing with their hands down and not in the pageant stance of putting their hands on their hips. This position gives the appearance of being open and relaxed. That’s a message we want to convey to the judges.


Talk with your hands

If you watch professional speakers, you will notice that they use their hands. Your hands can help to emphasize a point or count a variety of options in your answer. One work of caution, don’t allow your hands to become distracting. Any large movements will detract from you and what you are saying. Keep hand movements in front of your body and below chest level. Let it be natural.


Put your hands behind your back

If you are feeling nervous or unsure, simply clasp your hands behind your back. This gives the vibe of being open and willing to listen. It pulls your shoulders back and straightens your posture so you appear confident. It may even help you to feel more confident.


Never clasp your hands in front

This is so important! I recently was a timer for a pageant where they had standing interview. Over 90% of the contestants stood with their hands clasped in front of them. I immediately noticed that they slouched. Then they tended to look at the floor instead of the judges. This projects insecurity. In interview, the judges are looking for a confident person to represent the crown.


What about putting your hands on your hips?

This can be tricky. You don’t want to appear cocky or over confident. Putting your hands on your hips can also appear confrontational. It can even make you look too relaxed if you don’t watch your posture. Be very careful with this common onstage stance. Practice in front of a mirror to make sure you are conveying the right nonverbal message.

Standing interview can be intimidating. Don’t let it get the best of you. Make sure you are relaxed and using your hands in a normal manner. Your hands are a natural extension of who you are. Use them to connect with the judges.

Want more tips and tricks to win over the judges? Check out my audiophile, Pageant 101. This online class has the exact same pageant winning advice I share with my private clients. Download your copy today!

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