Helen Skelton ‘a changed woman’ after split thanks to Strictly confidence boostNovember 25, 2022
Helen Skelton is ‘prepared to fight for a win’ on Strictly Come Dancing, with body language expert Judi James also spotting how the former Blue Peter presenter is more confident than ever on the BBC show
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Helen Skelton has become a ‘changed woman’ since she first took to the dancefloor earlier this year.
The former Blue Peter presenter, 39, saw her confidence levels peak during her latest live Strictly Come Downing performance in Blackpool over the weekend – a far cry from the ‘wary woman’ fans of the BBC show met when this year’s series first kicked off.
Body language expert Judi James has examined some of the ‘tells’ Helen is displayed these days that reveal why her new found confidence is authentic and shows a genuine enthusiasm for dancing with her professional partner Gorka Márquez.
But while Helen is loving life as a celebrity dancer, Judi has spotted Gorka giving off some ‘glum’ vibes’ during recent joint interviews.
Strictly bosses make changes to quarter-final as Kym Marsh given ‘free pass’ Helen Skelton is tipped to reach the Strictly Come Dancing final next month (
“Helen’s confidence signals peaked with her Blackpool performance, and her body language on It Takes Two last night revealed a complete change of emotional state from the wary woman we saw at the start of the series,” the body language expert explains.
She goes on to explain: “There were at least five ‘tells’ that showed this confidence is authentic: Firstly her pace. Her speech has speeded up to signal enthusiasm and her movements and gestures are the same.
‘Helen is prepared to fight for a win’ (
“She was sitting in the front of her chair rather than sitting back using self-protective barrier gestures, and her feet were placed side by side on the floor for most of the interview, suggesting focus and strength. When she did cross her legs they were at an angled slant, hinting at the kind of vanity she appeared to lack at the start of the season.”
Judi adds: “Helen also used two powerful gestures to suggest she really does feel she can win this competition and get her hands on that glitterball: She didn’t just punch the air in a gesture of victory and celebration, she brought the elbow back in a signal she’s prepared to fight for a win.
“She also sat with one hand on her hip during the interview, with the elbow pointing out. This is a partial splay that suggests she sees herself as strong and competitive.”
But while Helen is enjoying a confidence boost, her dance partner Gorka is displaying some signs of anxiety.
“However, did Gorka share her signals of enjoying their winning streak?” Judi muses when examining the pair’s body language.
Gorka is showing some signs of anxiety (
She adds: “The answer is no. Gorka seemed keen to temper the excited mood a bit. Asked about their dance that got almost perfect scores last week he said ‘She loved it’, which was ambiguous, then asked about the Samba they’re performing on Saturday he said ‘She’s going for it’ and it was Janette who praised the rehearsal footage.
“The big question though is why did Gorka sit playing with his wedding ring for the entire length of the interview? He fiddled with it, turned it and pulled it up and down his finger.
Judi concludes: “Gestures like this can be self-comfort signals of anxiety, where someone uses their partner or family as an emotional go-to prop or refuge. So what is worrying Gorka at a point where, like Helen, his confidence should be at a peak, with a possible win firmly in his sights?”
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