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    The precision of the human hand: variability in pinch strength and manual dexterity

    Bardo, A. and Town, K. and Kivell, T. and Donati, G. and Ballieux, H. and STAMATE, Cosmin and Edginton, T. and Forrester, Gillian (2022) The precision of the human hand: variability in pinch strength and manual dexterity. Symmetry 14 (1), p. 71. ISSN 2073-8994.

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    Changes in hand morphology throughout human evolution have facilitated the use of forceful pad-to-pad precision grips, contributing to the development of fine motor movement and dexterous manipulation typical of modern humans. Today, variation in human hand function may be affected by demographic and/or lifestyle factors, but these remain largely unexplored. We measured pinch grip strength and dexterity in a heterogeneous cross-sectional sample of human participants (n = 556) to test for the potential effects of sex, age, hand asymmetries, hand morphology, and frequently practiced manual activities across the lifespan. We found a significant effect of sex on pinch strength, dexterity, and different directional asymmetries, with the practice of manual musical instruments, significantly increasing female dexterity for both hands. Males and females with wider hands were also stronger, but not more precise, than those with longer hands, while the thumb-index ratio had no effect. Hand dominance asymmetry further had a significant effect on dexterity but not on pinch strength. These results indicate that different patterns of hand asymmetries and hand function are influenced in part by life experiences, improving our understanding of the link between hand form and function and offering a referential context for interpreting the evolution of human dexterity. View Full-Text


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): hand asymmetries, functional morphology, hand size, hand shape, pinch grip, performance, peg-board task
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Gillian Forrester
    Date Deposited: 14 Mar 2022 13:35
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 18:15


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