Social Question

Nimis's avatar

When driving, what positions are your hands on?

Asked by Nimis (13127points) June 6th, 2012 from iPhone

We’ve all been taught it should be 10 and 2. But that seems so uncomfortable and unnatural.

I usually have mine at 7 and 2. What about you?

From a random sampling on a six-hour car ride, I noticed that the majority (at least 4/5) of 10 and 2 drivers were women. Would you care to include your sex to see if my observation pans out (over yet another limited sampling)?

I know the question includes hands and positions. But let’s try to keep it clean, folks.

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19 Answers

augustlan's avatar

Female, and I’m more like 9 and 2. One of my hands is always higher than the other, pretty much.

Edit: After thinking some more, I realize that sometimes I’m 9 and 5:30 ish.

jerv's avatar

First off, 10-and-2 went away when airbags became common; the airbags will shove your arms who-knows-where and injure them severely. Either you are old, or your drivers ed material is.

Mine wander, though the most common positions are 9-and-3 or 2-and-smoking. Yes, I drive one-handed when traffic and weather conditions allow, and yes, I smoke left-handed.

deni's avatar

10 and 2 if I’m on a windy road, but if I’m just cruising, 6 and 6. I like to let my hands kick back and relax down at the bottom of the wheel. If I need to make a sharp turn I move em, but otherwise, they chillin.

ccrow's avatar

Usually 9 and 3. I hook my thumbs over the cross bars. If I’m driving one-handed, I think I have my hand a little higher, probably 2ish. My recollection of driver’s ed is that we were told more like 11 and 1 than 10 and 2… but I know that now because of airbags they should be lower. So all this time I’ve been doing it wrong, I was actually doing it right.

amujinx's avatar

In good weather and traffic, either 2 and nothing or 4 and nothing. In poor weather or traffic, 9 and 2 or 4. When hauling a trailer, 9 and 2. When plowing, usually just my left hand at 12 or 6, right on the plow controls.

ucme's avatar

More often than not my left hand is on the gearstick & my right placed around 2 ish.

JLeslie's avatar

Usually with one hand, unless I am really focusing because of windy roads or getting around heavy traffic. Mostly 3:00 I think? Sometimes down at 5:00. Sometimes up at 12 or 1. When I drive with two hands up somewhere like 9 and 3.

Since I drive a lot of manual cars many times it is my left at 9 or 10, especially in heavy traffic or hilly and twisty roads where I am shifting a lot.

I think 10 and 2 was changed to 9 and 3 when air bags were added because it was difficult to put your hands there not sure, I feel like I need to go out to my car and check. It might also have been decided it is better handeling? I should ask my husband he races cars.

thorninmud's avatar

I don’t have a good excuse for this, but unless I’m in a tense situation, chances are that my right wrist is resting on my right leg and I’ll be holding the wheel down where it’s closest to that leg—so, 4:30ish? Maybe—maybe—my left hand will be mirroring that, but it’s just as likely to be propped up on the window ledge. When things get exciting, they’ll gravitate to 10 and 2.

I know: bad.

Oh and Nimis, there you are with that crazy observation thing again

marinelife's avatar

My hands are at like 8 and 2.

cookieman's avatar

Left hand at 9, if it’s on the wheel at all.

Right hand alternates between 2 and 5.

filmfann's avatar

My hands move around the wheel. I often drive with my left hand at 1, and my right hand resting. I also drive with my right hand at 6, while my left arm is on the door.
Yes, it violates all the rules, but in 38 years of driving, I have had one accident that was my fault (I was adjusting the radio on a rental car), and none of the accidents I was not responsible for could have been avoided.


When I was 21, a close friend of mine complimented me on my driving skills.
When my Father derided them, I told him “Cheri say I am a very oriented driver!”
My Father replied “She meant oriental.”

wundayatta's avatar

Mine are all over, depending on whether I am turning, driving with one hand, cruising, or more active. On the highway, it’s probably around 6, if I’m one-handed, or 7 and 5. When things get tense, I’m more 10 and 2, especially if it’s night and raining and the windshield is foggy and vision is bad. I might even be hunched forward, trying to get a better view.

Coloma's avatar

What hands? My car drives itself! lol
Um…probably something like 10 and 3 for me.

Mariah's avatar

10 and 2 is what my dad taught me, and what I still do. In NY they’ve actually recently changed the driver instruction manual to recommend 9 and 3 (it said 10 and 2 before). I don’t know the reason for the change.

JLeslie's avatar

@Mariah You might have missed what I wrote above that I think it was decided 9 and 3 are better for handeling. I also think it had something to do with air bags being add and more difficult to grip at 10 and 2 on many wheels. I have heard these things, but not sure if those are the actual reasons.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

About 8 and 2.

bewailknot's avatar

Female. In town 10 and 2, on the highway 0 (no hand) and 3.

AngryWhiteMale's avatar

It used to be 10 and 2 were the standard recommendations, but now it’s 9 and 3, in part because of air bags (as several of you have already noted). The reason is that in the 10 and 2 position, an air bag will push your hands back into your face, and could hit your eyes. At 9 and 3, your arms will go off onto the sides, away from your body.

Also, 9 and 3 gives you better control of the car. I’ve seen some studies that recommend 8 and 4, but I find 9 and 3 works for me.

Nimis's avatar

@jerv Apparently I am old.

@thorninmud I am the queen of trivial observations. :P

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