How to become ambidextrous

For those who don’t know, ambidexterity means “The property of being equally skilful with each hand”, which is the combination of both left-handedness and right-handedness.

As to what I see, the Eastern society tends to shun the usage of left hand in exchanging items with other people. One may think that this derives from Muslim culture, but it really isn’t. Using your left-hand to pass an item is also shunned in the predominantly Hindu Bali and secular Singapore.

If you ask any Easterner as to why they deem the usage of left hand as impolite, the immediate answer would be around “because we use the left hand to clean our buttocks after defecating”.

That’s a common sense.

What’s not a common sense is the fact that not everyone in Asia actually use their left hands to clean their asses.

There is the bidet, apart from the long existing toilet papers that is more commonly used in the Western society.

Now my post today would not focus very much around your ass-cleaning activities, because I know this would scare you off from reading any further.

Rather, today I want to focus on how to become an ambidextrous person.

The statistics have shown that one-sixth of the world population is a left-handed, with significant minority of them being coaxed (or sometimes forced) to become a right-handed since their childhood.

I actually wonder why don't we just banish the idea of being left-handed or right-handed together.....

Why don't we just train ourselves to become ambidextrous instead of promoting "hand superiority" over the other? Take a look at it, a majority of us right-handers tend to 'overwork' our right hand in these activities below:

writing, opening the door, brushing our teeth, clicking the mouse, applying motorcycle brakes, etc.


That's exactly how I perceive my own right hand: It has been overworked, while my left hand has been slacking off during 18 years of my life.

Don't you 'sympathise' with your right hands too?

I must admit, practising writing with your left hand could make you feel like a kindergarten student learning how to write all over again from the ABCs and such.

But I have a list of activities where you could easily switch from your right hand to your left.

For starters, what about picking up a musical instrument that require both hands together? Piano is a good example. Guitar, which requires heavy usage of left hand on the chords, is also an excellent example.

You could also switch your computer mouse from the normal right-hand orientation towards the left-hand one. Here's how to do it (for Windows users):

Settings >>> Control Panel >>> Mouse >>> Buttons


and tick the "Switch primary and secondary buttons" option.

For those of you who play badminton or squash or tennis, you may also want to switch to use the racket on your left hand.

Using your left hand to use the racket may seem like learning to write, but it really isn't. Trust me, there are actually a lot more benefits you could reap (especially regular players) if you use both hands interchangeably, because you could still play the sport even if your right hand is fatigued.

evans16v  – (2 July 2009 at 15:15)  

I agree with that last comment about the fatigue. I've been playing squash with my left hand for the last week due to having tennis elbow in my right and already I'm almost up to the same standard as with my right, all I need to do is build muscle in my lower arm which with come with practice. I just can't wait to see an opponent face when I switch hands half way through a game!

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