Realistic simulation of interacting virtual characters is essential in computer games, training and simulation applications. The problem is very challenging since people are accustomed to real-world situations and thus, they can easily detect inconsistencies and artifacts in the simulations. Over the past twenty years several models have been proposed for simulating individuals, groups and crowds of characters. However, little effort has been made to actually understand how humans solve interactions and avoid inter-collisions in real-life. In this paper, we exploit motion capture data to gain more insights into human-human interactions. We propose four measures to describe the collision-avoidance behavior. Based on these measures, we extract simple rules that can be applied on top of existing agent and force based approaches, increasing the realism of the resulting simulations. © Springer-Verlag 2009.