Thankfully, we know better now — but not much better. The vast majority of us favour the right hand, and most of the rest prefer the left. More on this here: Left-Handers or Right-Handers: Whose Brains Work Faster? Her award-winning articles have appeared in over 30 publications including RD.com, Conde Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure, Oprah.com, Parents, Forbes.com, Shape, USA Today, Prevention, Good Housekeeping, Web MD and Scholastic. Jackson and his followers believed that the brain’s hemispheres are distinct and independent, and that the preponderance of right-handedness was effectively wasting half of our potential to learn. Although based on scientific observations, Jackson’s claims were widely dismissed. Tie a righties’ arm behind her back, though, and she soon changes her tune. Some people are heavily handed: they do everything with their right, or their left, hand. This is, however, speculation, and there is as yet no evidence that ambidexterity training causes psychological problems. “I’m a lefty and find that, strangely, people often notice,” says Ingrid Hansen, a publicist at Launch Media. On the other, it is not at all clear that ambidexterity training would have the same effects on the brain as being born ambidextrous apparently does. She, too, credits her left-handedness to her creative spirit. They are disproportionately represented among patients suffering from psychosis and schizophrenia. In contrast, righties process faces in the right-hand-side of the brain. “While people tend to draw a line in the sand between lefties and righties, research is starting to suggest that it’s not quite that simple,” says Jason Eckerman, PhD, a licensed psychologist and lefty. Some people are heavily handed: they do everything with their right, or their left, hand. People vary a lot in how right- or left-handed they are. In 1903, John Jackson, the headteacher of a grammar school in Belfast, founded the Ambidextral Culture Society. Ambidexterity is also associated with greater age-related decline in brain volume. Get involved with the Use your head series by joining the discussion on #useyourhead. Despite the popular view that lefties are more naturally talented, it’s righties who pull down 10-12% higher salaries, data from the US and the UK finds. That extends to the very concept of right and left in the brain. And while Rose rightly states that the non-dominant hand is linked to the “non-dominant” hemisphere of the brain, his assertion that the non-dominant hemisphere “isn’t exercised as often” is incorrect, because all behaviours, even those that engage brain areas found on only one side of the brain, tend to involve the co-ordinated activity of both hemispheres. But a tiny minority – fewer than one in 100 – are ambidextrous.
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