ELi5: Does writing with your non-dominant hand bad for your brain?


I’ve read a lot about how learning to do tasks with your non-dominant hand improves brain function, but at the same time I’ve read some articles stating that it’s not good, and worsens brain function. Is there any real threat if I start learning to writing with my non-dominant hand?

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3 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

Until some decades ago, many left-handed students were forced to write with their right hands. My father was one of them.

I’m not sure if it did him any harm, but there have been studies of brain functions that show a difference between lefties writing right-handed and righties writing right handed. Perhaps part of the brain has to be used to suppress the more natural way of writing.

Is that bad for your brain? I don’t know. And it might not be bad as long you don’t write exclusively with the non-dominant hand.

To take an example from baseball, most switch hitters aren’t quite as good on their non-dominant side. If they were forced to his from the “wrong” side all the time, it would lower their batting average. But if they are allowed to switch at will, based on who’s pitching, it will help their hitting. Similarly, I would think writing with either and would be good for your brain, but never learning to write with your dominant hand might make it harder to write in the long run.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Did you write the title of your post with your non-dominant hand?

Anonymous 0 Comments

No, it’s probably fine to try to improve the dexterity of your non-dominant hand. However it is a bad idea to force people to not use their dominant hand.

Your brain can rewire itself to a point but there are limits.