Next time you hear a man taking to age-old playground taunt, ‘you throw ball like a girl’, don’t discard it as a sexist remark. That could actually be true, as scientists have found that male and female brains are wired differently.
While male brains are structured for perception and coordination, the new research says female grey matter is wired up for coordination between the analytical and intuitive parts of the brain.
So stereotypes like women are bad at parking cars and men can’t multi-task are not completely unfounded.
The results of the study seem to explain why men are considered better at things like navigating, parking cars and throwing balls while women are credited with being better at multi-tasking, are more intuitive socially, and tend to remember events like anniversaries.
The study, carried out by scientists from the University of Pennsylvania, analysed the brain structures of nearly 1,000 people.
It found that men’s brains tend to have more connections within each side of the brain and tend to run between the back and front, while women have more connections on the left and right side of their brain.
The greater control of muscles, according to the researchers is linked to greater connectivity within a brain hemisphere, as is seen in men.
“More connections between the hemispheres of the brain, like those seen in women, are better for analytical reasoning, social understanding and memory,” said the research study.
Men were far better at processing spatial information about their surroundings, controlling their movements and had faster reaction times, while tests on the women volunteers showed they were better than men in attention tests, remembering faces and words, and social interactions.
Dr Ragina Verma, one of the researchers behind the study, said: “These maps show us a stark difference – and complementarity – in the architecture of the human brain that helps provide a potential neural basis as to why men excel at certain tasks, and women at others.”
The study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, examined brain scans of 949 people aged between eight and 22-years-old.