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Our coverage on COVID‑19

This is how you should greet people during the COVID-19 outbreak

We’re all familiar with the handshake. It’s a form of greeting that dates back to ancient Greece, and it is something that’s used in both professional and “hey bro!” settings ever since. But, with the prevalence of the highly contagious COVID-19 virus, this may not be the most pragmatic greeting any more. So, what can we do? Well, people around the world have developed a new greeting method that’s far more practical in our current medical climate.

Affectionately named the Wuhan Shake, this new form of greeting comes straight out of China and doesn’t involve your hands at all. Instead, when two people meet and want to greet each other, they extend their legs and gently tap the insides of their feet.

This video that was posted several days ago on Twitter has already been viewed more than 239,000 times with thousands of retweets and likes. The video has also been picked up by major news outlets and is still gaining popularity among the netizens.

Presenters of Channel News Asia in Singapore have also performed the Wuhan Shake and it was shared via Twitter.

The Wuhan Shake seems to have evolved from the kick and step dance move which you may have seen in beginner hip hop dance routines. It’s cool to see something fun like this come out of what is essentially a very bleak situation surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak.

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In fact, it became so popular that we even saw the Wuhan Shake make it to Africa when Tanzania’s President John Magufuli greeted politician Maalim Seif Sharif Hamad at the State House with a similar “leg shake” rather than a traditional handshake. 

However, if you think the Wuhan Shake is too troublesome, here are some other alternatives to the handshake that you can try out instead.

With social distancing measures being taken, here are some alternative greetings to the traditional handshake- credit to NUS media platform.

I think that the idea of adopting alternative greetings is a good move because our hands are one of the easiest ways to transmit the disease. That’s because they’re the first things we use to interact with everything and are the most vulnerable to contamination. 

In countries like France and Italy, people have been urged against their usual double-cheek kiss greetings to help curb the spread of COVID-19. 

As of the 10th of March, France has already reported 1,209 cases with 25 deaths while Italy has seen a massive spike to 9,172 reported cases with 463 deaths. In fact, conditions have gotten so dire in Italy that they have been forced into a national lockdown.

There are now 113,582 cases worldwide with 3,996 reported deaths. In Malaysia, we currently have 117 reported cases with two currently in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

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