Why do Apple Keynote presenters keep their elbows bent at 90°?

Finally watched the recent keynote presentation. Each of the presenters (now and before) always keep their elbows bent at 90°. Just curious why that is.


Speculation here but from when I was taught public speaking a big piece of controlling body language is having something to do with your hands. If you let them drop to your side and have a pocket available it’s really easy to drop into the pocket and either look too casual or nervous. If you have no hand movement it looks robotic to come up from the hip every time. If you notice, the best TED talks and almost every speech given at a podium has the presenter’s elbows bent and hands visible so they can add to the presentation constructively rather than be awkward and hidden.

Another fun thing to look at is how the neutral position is set for the person. Interlocked fingers is considered a sign of anxiety while one hand over the other is a posture of confidence.


I noticed this in myself on Monday as I returned to online teaching.
If I am presenting something, actively teaching to camera, I tend to get my hands up just around the bottom of the screen.

This lets me use them to stress things etc, without them suddenly appearing out of nowhere, which can surprise people and also leads to gestures becoming larger than is useful, and therefore distracting.

It also keeps me focused on the presentation, rather than letting them drift to the keyboard and start fiddling.


Apple has professionals that train their execs on presentation and body language, etc. Most of this is to appear authoritative, and communicate that with the audience. I feel like Apple overdoes it, at times I find their application of gestures to be distracting and annoying :slight_smile: