Ambidexterity is a rather complicated term which is not used often. This possibly can be the result of the occurrence of the cases of ambidexterity in the world where right-handed people are prevailing. Actually, according to statistics, nearly 90% of the population of the earth are right-handed people while approximately 9% of population are left-handed people. As you can guess, only 1% of people are ambidextrous. Let’s look at some details of this unique phenomenon.
What exactly ambidexterity is?
Ambidextrous people are the people who are capable of using both of their hands equally, performing the same tasks with equal precision with the left hand and the right hand. You shouldn’t mistake ambidexterity for so-called mixed domination of a hand. This condition is far more widespread than ambidexterity. Although people with mixed domination of a hand can perform different tasks with the both hands as well, it is not the same as it is in the case of ambidexterity.
For instance, mixed domination of a hand is popular among musicians who are using both of their hands for playing a musical instruments. This allows them to develop particular skills in the non-dominant hand, however, these skills are rather limited. In fact, each of their hands is trained to perform different tasks. Such people can’t be call ambidextrous since they will still face significant difficulties while writing or eating with a non-dominant hand. Ambidextrous people do not have such difficulties at all since there is no difference between the skills of the both hands.
What causes ambidexterity in people?
Undeniably, one of the most interesting questions is what exactly can cause ambidexterity in people. Unfortunately, there is still no answer to this question. There are many theories related to this phenomenon and one of the most popular assumption connects the choice of a dominant hand with the asymmetry of the brain spheres.
According to a popular belief, the left brain sphere and the right one are responsible for different functions which is supposedly less energy-consuming for our body. Still, we shouldn’t oversimplify the anatomy and functions of brain claiming that the right sphere is responsible for art whereas the left one is focused on logic. Even though such a claim is rather primitive, the brain spheres are definitely not equal.
Considering this theory, the centres specialising in speech are developing in the most cases in the left sphere which is controlling the right limbs of your body. For that reason, many scientists think that the right hand is more developed in the majority of people since from the point of view of evolution, speech is extremely crucial for human beings. One of the proofs of this theory is the fact that apes who haven’t developed speech as it is known in people, do not tend to having a right hand as a dominant one.
At the same time, other scientists are pointing out the fact that there are many other species of animals who are featured by the asymmetry of the skillfulness of their limbs, however, they can’t speak.
Ambidextrous people have more symmetrical brain than the majority of people. This gives scientists an idea that both of the spheres can be connected to the same body functions. Even though it seems to be great to be able to do even the most complex things with both of your hands equally well, scientists are still not sure whether it is good for us or not.
Can ambidexterity be a sign of uniquely high intellect?
Needless to say, the ability to use both of our hands for writing, working and doing household chores would be very useful for everyone. It is especially needed when one breaks a dominant arm and struggles even with the simplest tasks. Of course, some people find this amazing ability as a feature of a really ingenious person. Yet, the researchers are still not sure, whether ambidexterity is actually connected with great intellectual abilities.
For instance, some scientists are sure that inherent ambidexterity can be related to speech problems as well as difficulties with concentration. This assumption is based on the theory that the spheres of the brain are competing with each other and asymmetry of this crucial organ is necessary for proper maintenance of our body. According to these scientists, symmetrical brain is processing equal information which can lead to the decrease in the speed of thinking.
Even though there is such an opinion, there are still many scientists who see ambidexterity as something useful and absolutely positive for people. For that reason, you can come across a great number of courses and exercises the idea of which is teaching you the equal usage of both of your hands. As claimed by the coaches offering such courses, the use of a non-dominant hand improves the bounds between neurons. Presumably, this is very beneficial for your creativity. Still, this theory wasn’t proved yet.