Steering Wheel: Proper Hand Positions
Q. What is the proper hand position when driving? I heard it’s not 10&2 anymore, why?
A. I can remember in my old driver’s ed class that the 10&2 position was constantly drilled into us. Actually saw one teacher slapping hands if the student deviated from this hand position! However, it really does not work well for a variety of reasons. Here are a few of the important reasons to consider changing to the 9&3 position:
Airbags. If your hands are in a 10&2 position and the airbag goes off there is a high likelihood that your hands or forearms are going to be slammed into your head at 200mph. Ouch! Not good for either your arms or your head. You could possibly wind up with a broken bone or two. A 9&3 position lessens the chance of this danger.
Ergonomics. Before driving away the next time you’re in your vehicle, start out holding the wheel at the recommended position of 9&3. Now slowly move your hands up to the 10&2 position and notice what is happening to your shoulders. They’re “hunching” up and putting them into an unnatural, uncomfortable position! At 9&3 the shoulders are relaxed. This really adds to your comfort when you have extended drives. You want to be comfortable when you’re driving … right?
The most important reason we recommend the 9&3 hand position is that it allows a greater range of motion in an evasive maneuver without having to take your hands off the steering wheel … nearly 270 degrees of turning vs. about 90 degrees in the 10&2. When you’re running out of time to avoid a collision, you need to have full control over your vehicle’s direction. 9&3 will provide you with this edge compared to any other hand position.
So 9&3 – be safe … be comfortable … be in control!
February 21, 2011 | Posted in: Ask The Experts
This question was answered by: Sam RyanDisclaimer
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