Queen Elizabeth II's rule about touching 'chucked out' by 'relaxed' Kate and William

The Prince and Princess of Wales are more comfortable with handshakes than the late monarch was, a body language expert has revealed

Queen Elizabeth II's touching rule 'chucked out' by Kate and William
(Image credit: Getty)

Prince William and Kate Middleton's decision to ditch Queen Elizabeth II's unwritten rule about handshaking reveals their more 'relaxed' style as modern royals, a body language expert has revealed. 

Prince William and Kate Middleton won't be following in Queen Elizabeth II's footsteps when it comes to handshakes, a body language expert has revealed. 

The late monarch was known for her hesitancies around physical touch, preferring to acknowledge crowds on walkabouts with a simple nod and friendly smile instead. 

It's widely believed that she avoided the traditional handshake because it would have taken so much time to offer one to everybody, and would have likely left her with a fairly sore wrist too. Her Majesty's only daughter, Princess Anne, also skips on the common greeting in public, revealing in 2018 that she learned to "never" do it early on in her royal career. 


(Image credit: Getty)

"The theory was that you couldn't shake hands with everybody, so don't start," the 73-year-old explained in the HBO documentary, Queen of the World

On the contrary, the Prince and Princess of Wales have openly embraced the classic handshake at public engagements, according to Darren Stanton for Slingo

'Confident' Kate, in particular, appears to have gotten the gesture down to a fine art.

Kate M

(Image credit: Getty)

The 41-year-old's "arms are often stretched out and she has good eye contact when shaking hands with others," the former police officer notes. "A lot of it is relaxed with Kate and William. The Queen was not one to shake hands, but that was all chucked out of the window with them." 

The Prince and Princess of Wales's more casual public personas have been on full display in recent months, with both parties joking and even accepting selfie requests - a former royal taboo - from excited fans on multiple occasions. 

That doesn't mean the couple is completely adverse to the British monarchy's longstanding traditions, though. 

"You will notice that when other people meet her, they either curtsey or do a court bow, which is a sign of submission," Stanton adds. "People will also dip their heads when they meet Kate. They will make themselves lower than her and members of the Royal family. That shows they are saying, ‘I acknowledge your importance.’ Kate has never displayed any signs of anxiety as a result of this. She recognises that it is one of the protocols people are instructed to do." 

Emma Dooney
News and lifestyle writer

Emma is a Lifestyle News Writer for Goodto. Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, she mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.