Researchers suggest this happens to optimize our potential dating pool (Salska, et al., 2008).
On the other hand, this also suggests that women at the shorter end of the spectrum and men at the taller end can afford to be more selective in who they wish to date, since they have a wider available dating pool from which to choose. Another important finding in how height impacts attraction are our relationship goals. Other factors that influence height preference So, if women have a general preference for taller men and if height is rewarding, then why aren’t we all dating basketball players?Research shows that when it comes to selecting a potential romantic partner, taller is not always better.Even beyond biology, this study showed that women had a stronger preference for taller men when they were looking for a short-term relationship.
In other words, height and physical attraction may be most important when looking for a fling or a casual sexual relationship.
One study found that women who were attracted to taller men during times of ovulation – when they were the most fertile (Pawlowski & Jasienska, 2005). Personality and Individual Differences, 13, 1349-1350.
Women looking for a relationship during their most fertile phase, in evolutionary terms, would be looking for good genes pass on to potential offspring but likely little parental investment and companionship.
Thus, finding men who are agreeable, smart, and gainfully employed are signs that they will make good providers.
In sum, evolutionary theory predicts that women look for men who can provide security and protection, who can invest in their child resources in a long-term relationship or who can pass on good genes in a short-term fling. Female waist-to-hip and male waist-to-shoulder ratios as determinants of romantic desirability. The evolution of human intrasexual competition: Tactics of mate attraction. Variable preferences for sexual dimorphism in stature (SDS): Further evidence for an adjustment in relation to own height.
If you look at the couples around you, you find that most men are taller than their women.