Monday, February 3, 2014

Right-Handedness

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I’m right-handed; about 90% of people are. I’ve heard it said that lefties tend to be a bit more artistic, but otherwise, their skills are about the same as the rest of us. I used to read that, on average, ambidextrous folks are not so much equally coordinated with both hands as they are equally UN-coordinated with both hands. The failure for the body to decide which hand is favored probably lessens the practice the normally chosen hand would get, lessening its eventual skill.

A lot of people don’t realize that if you’re right-handed, you’re usually also right-footed. When you scuff something with your foot, you’ll usually find yourself standing on your left foot and scuffing with your right foot. This is so true that most people have a slightly larger left foot from standing on it more. Needless to say, you’ll also tend to kick more naturally with your right foot. Four-footed animals tend to lead with the same foot all the time, unless they’re making a turn, I suspect people tend to start walking with the same foot, too, but I’ve never tried to watch for the habit.

We “righties” tend to be right-eyed also. It’s called “having a dominant right eye.” The way to test yourself is to extend your arm and point at something and then close your left eye. If you’re still on target, you’re right-eyed. If not, try it again and then close your right eye. If you’re still on target, you’re left-eyed. Being right-handed, but left-eyed can cause a need for extra practice in actions requiring good eye-hand coordination, such as sports and some types of manual labor. Also, when I was a kid, I had a friend who couldn’t shoot his rifle very well, and bent over the stock strangely when he sighted. I suggested that he close his left eye and his groups tightened right up impressively. He was ecstatic. It turned out that, though he shot right-handed, he was left-eyed.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve noticed something else; most righties sleep mostly on their left side. I don’t know if our bodies naturally have that tendency, or if it’s a subconscious attempt to keep our most coordinated hand more available to use in the night. That might be for such things as taking a drink or clicking the remote. I tend to think it’s more primal, as in grabbing a spear to repel the saber-tooth tiger lurking around the cave entrance.

Sleeping mostly on one side may come with an ill-affect, though, too. I can base it only on the experience of myself and my wife, but her cancer was on her left side, and thus her Lymphedema is also. After too many years of sitting at my work, I developed edema in my left leg. I suspect it’s due to blood and lymphatic fluids tending to pool in the lowest part of the body, BOTH feet through the day, but only the left at night. I suspect there’s much to learn about this subject, but I doubt if there’s any money to be made at it, so I don’t look for effort to research the matter.


Just something that crossed my mind while snowed in at the cabin another day! © 2014
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10 comments:

Sunnybrook Farm said...

If you are left handed then you are right brain so art comes easy and math probably has to be learned by switching brain sides. Being right handed, I am left brained which is where logical stuff happens so to do art I had to teach myself to switch to right brain for creative. I could really tell when it switched at first and it was strange but now I can do it with out noticing. Kind of like how it was to first ride a bike, you really got excited but later you just hop on and ride.

Gorges Smythe said...

Right and left-handed I can understand, SF. Right and left brain is getting a little beyond me, though! :-)

Chickenmom said...

Hubby is truly ambidextrous. Me - I can type like all get out with my right hand, but really slow with my left and my brain can never decide which side to use! We had about 5 inches of snow today - more expected on Wednesday. Where is Spring???

Gorges Smythe said...

I'm mostly just uncoordinated in general, but there's a few things that I do fairly well,.....like sitting really still!

Lady Locust said...

I am ambidextrous - which evidently means I am uncoordinated. I was left eye & hand dominant & a mean teacher said, "It's a right handed world" and made me switch. It messed up my equilibrium. Now, I cut with both hands, brush my teeth and shoot a basketball etc. left handed, write right handed & now shoot my gun right handed (used to be left,) & am left ear dominant. To test that one, just tell someone to go listen to the wall and see which ear they put to the wall. It is very helpful to know which ear is dominant for school aged children so they can sit on the side of the class where they will have their dominant ear towards the teacher. Like SF, I can often tell when I have to switch brains (if only I had one.)
Great post - love this stuff.

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

Right Handed and definitely right footed- I remember all those years playing kickball! I know what you mean about sitting all day, with most everything electronic at work, I rarely have to get up anymore unless there is something I have to scan or print.

Gorges Smythe said...

Remember, LL, I said "on average." (I always try to leave myself an out!) ;-)

Yeah, Kathy, and here I'm training for driving truck! Doesn't make sense; does it?

Mamahen said...

I am just all messed up lol Right eye, left ear, and mostly right handed although some hings I definitely do better with left like open a jar and when I use to wait tables, I could balance three plates with my left hand n forearm, but only two with my right :))

Gorges Smythe said...

As my neighbor used to say, Mh, you're just in a melluva hess!

Mamahen said...

Lol in more ways than one :))