We have known it for years. Non-verbal communication is a powerful tool to share our emotions. World wide a frown signifies anger and a smile happiness. The master psychologist Eric Berne years ago called a stroke as the smallest unit of recognition and told us about the power of positive strokes. Also how negative strokes, on the contrary, can go so far as to mar the growth of a growing infant. Young children thrive on positive strokes and it is up to us to give them in plenty for good work done.

A recent article in the New York Times  by Benedict Carey reassures us that the principles still apply, even in competitive sport. Examples are quoted of sports teams that perform better when they share more positive strokes. Recent research indicates that good teams ” tend to be touchier” than bad ones. These examples were largely from basketball teams as that is a high contact game.

For cricket lovers, the  fourth edition of the Indian Premier League ( IPL )  is coming up soon- on March 12, the Deccan Chargers – the defending champs-kick off the tournament by taking on the Kolkata Knight Riders on their home ground. Amidst all the action, keep an eye on your favourite teams and players. Do they use touch to charge their team mates? Do they use touch to ignite passion amongst the crowds?