6 Fascinating Facts About Being Ambidextrous That People Don’t Know
The first fact about being ambidextrous that you might not know is what it means. For those who haven't come across the word, it's when a person is able to use both of their hands with ease. And if you didn't even know that, you'll definitely be stunned by these fascinating facts about being ambidextrous. Because there's a lot of traits that come along with the ability to write well with both your left and right hand.
Most of the world is right handed — I'm talking 70 to 95 percent, according to Scientific American. So when the unusual left handed person comes along, you might be surprised by what you're seeing. Writing script with the left hand? How strange! But a pen can feel ~right~ at home in both hands for a select few.
If you're a right handed person and doing anything with your less dominant hand makes you feel like the world is suddenly spinning backwards, you're not ambidextrous. In fact, as we'll learn in more detail, people who are truly, thoroughly ambidextrous are extremely rare. Not mutant superhero recruited into X-men rare, but still, rare. Coming along with the identity of being able to properly utilize both hands with ease is a bunch of facts that might pique your interest.
Ambidextrous People Are In The 1 Percent
Yes, it's very rare to be ambidextrous. While 10 percent of the population is left-handed, only about 1 percent are truly able to alternate between both hands. It's a league of their own, really!
It's All About The Brain
To understand ambidextrous, we'll have to understand how the brain works. Because studies show that there is a direct link there. According to Reader's Digest, "Ambidexterity indicates that the left and right sides of that person's brain are pretty much symmetrical (which is true for lefties, too!) On the other hand, right-handed people tend to be left-brain dominant." Your brain is in control of how your hands handle a pen, basically.
There Are Various Skill Levels
... because you can be mixed-handed, but still have a dominant hand. But those who are through and through ambidextrous (again a very rare and low number of people), don't have a dominant hand. They can use both easily, trading pens between left and right.
In Good Company
Physical and artistic pursuits are where the ambidextrous soar. If you don't believe me, believe the company ambidextrous people keep. According to Mental Floss, "Leonardo da Vinci, Pete Rose, Richard Feynmen, pitcher Greg A. Harris, Michelle Kwan, Shigeru Miyamoto, Paul McCartney, Benjamin Franklin and Harry Truman," all had cross dominant hands. Congratulations on being masterminds and artistic geniuses.
There's A Link To Synesthesia
Those who are ambidextrous could also experience synesthesia. Which, to a basic right hander, sounds pretty fascinating. Readers Digest explains, "if you've ever heard about people being able to hear colors, feel physical sensations that other people are feeling, or even associate numbers with personalities, all of those sensations are variations of synesthesia. This fascinating brain condition triggers more than one of the five senses at once." It all has to do with sharing the trait of a symmetrical brain. And now here I am, right handed, wondering what pink sounds like.
Ambidextrous Started Out As Lefties, Probably
One of the most fascinating facts associated with being ambidextrous is that most ambidextrous people probably started out with a dominant left hand. More fascinating than that is where the cross dominant handed skill originates from.
Biblically, the left hand was associated with witchcraft. Which unfortunately people didn't think was very cool. It's even rooted in language. Ready to geek out? I think yes. In latin "sinistra" means left and that's where the word "sinister" comes from. So, people who were left handed might have felt forced to use their right hand to ward off any cruel and false judgement, which might have led to the development of ambidextrous people. I am truly shook.