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Author Topic: ambidextrous  (Read 11105 times)

Offline pulchritudinous

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ambidextrous
« on: 21/06/2004 22:24:18 »
there are far too many theories about handedness out there...

Some folk think that there is up to 5 types of handedness - totally left, totally right, totally ambi (with no preference), and the two other types of ambi with particular preferance of hand. And some think that there is no such thing as "ambidextrous" - it's just mixed-dominance. Some go so far as to saying that handedness is/should be so absolute that you can't be "a little bit left-handed" in the same way that you can't be "a little bit pregnant" - you either are or you aren't left-handed - and if you're anything in between, some perinatal trauma affected your brain in some way and that's why you are to some/any degree ambidextrous.

Then there are the infinite number theories about what determines handedness, and particularly the causation of left handedness.

There's the ones that state that hemispherical dominance determines handedness, and the ones that say left-handedness is a mistake, and may be caused by perinatal trauma, which damages the dominant left hemisphere of the brain (in should-be righties) more than the right, causing abnormal right-hemisphere dominance and then left-handedness.

Then There is the genetics theory (an obvious route to go). Some think there may be a "Left-Handed Gene" - some think that Left-people just LACK the "Right-Handed gene" and that there is a 50/50 chance of a person who lacks the "Right-Handed Gene" being either left-handed or right-handed. The latter theory would explain why identical twins occasionally have different handedness, and why two strongly left-handed parents don't always have left-handed children (as they theoretically should if both their genotypes were rr)

Of course - most of these theories are bollocks - and no-one really knows just why around 90% (according to most sources) of people are right-handed and around 10% (according to most sources) are "gauche", "sinister", and every other insult and left-handed compliment which is/was used to describe them. We also don't know why more males than females are lefties - the main theory is that they tend to be more right-brained (hmmm...). My theory is that it if there is/are genes which determine handedness - they are passed on in much the same way as colour-blindness, and haemophilia - both of which are also more prevalent in males. Of course, I'm no expert really, and I invite you to totally contradict me if you know better.  

Someone also tried to tell me that handedness is innate and CANNOT be converted, when I told them how I was "encouraged" to use my right hand as a toddler and now write mostly with my right hand. Maybe he's right that I couldn't have been converted with such ease, even at so young an age (still speaking only in monosyllables and barely potty trained) - maybe I was always ambidextrous. But if he's trying to say that, on no uncertain terms, it is impossible to convert handedness - he will have a whole host of converted left-handers, neurologists and other professionals who deal with brains ready and waiting to pooh-pooh that statement.


Some people say that people who are ambidextrous are either, as I said, results of a complicated pregnancy, or that they are simply converted left handers. Some think that converted left-handers have a "knot" in their brain and conversion could have life-long effects. Some think that due to the "neuro-plasticity" of young children's brains - it shouldn't really make much difference - if the child was converted particularly early on in their life.

*Sigh* who knows?

I'm ambidextrous - that's all I know.

Now, if you've managed to concentrate this far - go make yourself a cup of coffee (unless it's bed-time) and have a chocolate biccy - you deserve it.

Thanks for letting me use up your valuable time.




Heather.


 

Offline bezoar

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Re: ambidextrous
« Reply #1 on: 22/06/2004 00:03:04 »
Heather,
I got converted to the right hand as a toddler too.  Do you have a confusion between left and right?  I frequently get the two mixed up, and I also am fairly ambidexterous.  When someone says right or left to me, it's never an automatic thing.  I always have to think about it.  And when I was in school, the teachers said the right hand is the one you write with, but I wrote with both so it was very confusing.
 

Offline neilep

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Re: ambidextrous
« Reply #2 on: 22/06/2004 00:29:09 »
I'm right handed but I eat left handed, my sister (4 year gap) is left handed and eats right handed....what's that all about ?



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Offline gsmollin

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Re: ambidextrous
« Reply #3 on: 23/06/2004 00:33:31 »
More anecdotes,

I am multi-dextrous, which means that I have a handedness, but you or I will never guess ahead of time which one it is. For instance- I write lefty, throw and bat righty. Eat lefty, except when I'm excited, and then I may eat with both hands. I paint righty, unless it's close work, then it's lefty. I am righty with a hammer, but if it's a difficult toe-nailing job in a left-side corner, I can switch-hit in a second. Etc., etc...

I have absolutely no problem explaining left or right, and I cannot understand stone-right-handed people who cannot tell me "go left at the corner", instead I hear "go that way". I'm married to one of those.

I can't add any theory about handedness. It's a mystery to me, actually.
 

Offline neilep

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Re: ambidextrous
« Reply #4 on: 23/06/2004 14:25:38 »
Gsmollin you are well up there in the ambi-multi-dextrous league....it's a good job we only have two arms....or maybe you would make an ideal candidate for an experiment to bridge the gap between human and Octopus !!:D

Does multi-dextrousicity extend to feet too ?


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Offline gsmollin

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Re: ambidextrous
« Reply #5 on: 25/06/2004 00:18:23 »
Well, yes, I suppose it does, since "handed-ness" is really a brain function. I guess it extends throughout one's body. On the other hand (foot?), I don't recall ever hearing about any test for this characteristic. What foot do you step out with?
 

Offline nilmot

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Re: ambidextrous
« Reply #6 on: 25/06/2004 10:57:21 »
I'm like bezoar, converted to right hand when I was young. I eat, write do general thing with right hand but when it comes to doing sports activites or cooking, or holding a knife...(when you have to use large amount of force) I use my left hand.

Tom
 

Offline DrN

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Re: ambidextrous
« Reply #7 on: 25/06/2004 12:34:14 »
my brother is ambidextrous, he favours left hand for some things, including eating, but i think he still writes with his right hand, probably through being taught to write that way. but he's dyslexic too, was wondering if this is linked, as dyslexia is supposed to be caused by broken communication links between areas of the brain?

I've also heard theories on 'handedness' in identical twins, I don't know how true it is, but I've heard that most twins have opposite 'handedness' and that left handedness could be the result of twins where the right-handed one died early in development in the womb.
 

Offline neilep

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Re: ambidextrous
« Reply #8 on: 25/06/2004 19:59:49 »
quote:
Originally posted by gsmollin

Well, yes, I suppose it does, since "handed-ness" is really a brain function. I guess it extends throughout one's body. On the other hand (foot?), I don't recall ever hearing about any test for this characteristic. What foot do you step out with?



I start walking with my left..............hmmm !!!

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Offline bezoar

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Re: ambidextrous
« Reply #9 on: 26/06/2004 06:21:33 »
Hey don't forget about your dominant eye too -- and even your dominant ear.
 

Offline neilep

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Re: ambidextrous
« Reply #10 on: 26/06/2004 12:37:02 »
It's funny you should mention dominant ear Nance...I've created a topic which mught be related to that....or not....well...it depends on the answers I suppose.....

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Offline bezoar

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Re: ambidextrous
« Reply #11 on: 27/06/2004 22:59:48 »
Actually, I read somewhere that most people are left ear dominant.  Except for that, people with cross-dominance are supposed to have more trouble in school.  I am left eye, right hand/foot dominant and never had any trouble in school.
 

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Re: ambidextrous
« Reply #11 on: 27/06/2004 22:59:48 »

 

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