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How pens are left-handed

"How can a pen be left-handed?" is a question we hear all the time. Well, writing with a fountain pen can be a real problem for left-handers, as we are pushing the pen across the page rather than pulling it, which leads to difficulty with ink flow and the possibility of the nib digging into the paper. The problem is greatly alleviated by the use of a left-handed nib. Most of our pens have a rounded ball on the end of the nib that is machined to give smooth ink flow writing left-handed from almost any angle. Nibs are either fine or medium as stated in the product descriptions. Some people prefer a wider nib to produce italic script and will like our italic/oblique nib pens.

A lot of left-handers have a problem with smudging their work and if this is the case they may benefit from using a fine nib which puts less ink on the page, allowing it to dry faster.

Writing with a left-handed cartridge pen It is important to remember, however, that handwriting position is just as important as a well designed pen. For help with common handwriting problems, see our Handwriting Factsheet

How Yoropens are left-handed

Using the Yoropen is great for left-handers

The unique design of the Yoropen makes it perfect for left-handers, since it creates the perfect pen grip, requires far less effort to use, and banishes smudging forever!

The angle of the pen ensures that you can clearly see what you are writing as your hand does not obstruct your field of vision. The offset portion prevents fingers from slipping down towards the pen tip, allowing for a more relaxed grip, and so improving posture, saving energy and reducing writing strain. What is more, the Yoropen has a tripod grip that can be rotated until you find your most comfortable writing position.

The improved ease and comfort achieved with the Yoropen makes it ideal for writing over sustained periods such as exams, for teaching children to write and for those with handwriting difficulties or disabilities. The pen is available in a variety of styles to suit all ages and budgets, from the beautifully stylish brushed aluminium Executive Ballpen at 30.00, to the bright and funky disposable pens and refillable pencils at 3.00 each.

The Yoropen and pencil have been tried and tested by handwriting experts, teachers and children and always with a positive result, as shown from the following endorsements:

I was introduced to the Yoropen and have discovered that many children, particularly left-handed users have found it helpful. I have received comments such as, "I feel that I can sit up straight and see and not get backache" and "I found this pen very easy to write with and did not need to move the paper as much".’ The main benefits for left-handed users seem to be associated with being able to see what they are writing, resulting in evenly spaced writing and the fact that the Yoropen offers more comfort and less pain.
Laura Barnett
Paediatric Specialist Speech and Language Therapist

The pen does what it claims - by reducing strain, improving the field of vision, encouraging correct hold and assisting left-handers. It should be particularly welcomed by educational and physiotherapy professionals as another valuable resource to help their work. A great success.
Michael Woods
Editor of the Journal of the Writing Equipment Society

"My handwriting has improved and my mum really likes it. With an ordinary pencil you cannot see what you are writing, but with Yoro you can!"
Natalie aged 7

The Yoropen is the most effective ergonomic pen ever designed. It won the gold medal at the Geneva 2002 Salon International Invention awards, the world's largest and most prestigious invention fair.

How mugs are left-handed

We have a selection of mugs - some with slogans and images printed so they can be seen by the drinker when held in the left hand (unlike normal slogans!) and a range of "Ugly Mugs" which have a "face" protruding from one side, making it difficult to drink from this mug if you hold it in the right hand!

How clocks are left-handed

Left-handers are very good at reversing images in our heads, and as children often do it unintentionally - writing backwards or "mirror writing" which they can read effortlessly. Although not exclusively a left-handed phenomenon, the ability to read a backwards clock face is easier for us than the majority. They also make great gifts - for people who want to see time run backwards!

How corkscrews are left-handed

You will often see left-handers struggling with a right-handed corkscrew by holding the corkscrew still and turning the bottle, or just not bothering! A left-handed corkscrew has a screw which turns anti-clockwise - a natural motion for a left-hander. The waiter's corkscrews also have a small-bladed knife for removing the foil from the bottles.

How scissors are left-handed

The blades on left-handed scissors are set so that, whichever way up you hold them, the left blade is always on top. This means that the cutting action of the left hand pushes the blades together to give a smooth cut the whole length of the blades and also that a left-hander has a clear view of the cutting line. When a left-hander uses right-handed scissors, they have to push the thumb and index finger together in an unnatural way to make the scissors cut, causing marks on the hand and eventually callouses. Also, they have to look over the top blade, which obscures the cutting line.

With properly designed left-handed scissors these problems do not arise, as your natural cutting action matches that of the scissors. Just hold the scissors straight and naturally and do not try to twist the blades. After a short time, you will be completely comfortable with your new scissors and wonder how you put up with mis-using right-handed scissors for so long! All our scissors are fully left-handed with blades reversed and left hand moulded grips.
Cutting with left-handed scissorsLeft-Handed Scissors
With the blades reversed so the left blade is on top, you can see the cutting line and the blades have a proper cutting action when squeezed together. The grips are moulded to fit comfortably around the thumb joint.
Cutting with right-handed scissorsRight-Handed Scissors
The top blade covers the cutting line so you usually end up cutting inside it. The blades are pushed apart by the left handed squeezing movement and the paper bends between the blades. Also, the handle shape is very uncomfortable and leaves marks on the left thumb
A word of warning! As we have explained, it is not possible to make "ambidextrous scissors", although many manufacturers claim their scissors are "universal" or "suitable for left and right hand use". This only refers to the handles, which have not been moulded to fit the right hand knuckle, but they have no advantage for left-handers whatsoever as the blades are still set right-handed!

How tin openers are left-handed

No more spills! A left-handed tin opener is held in the right hand and the rotary handle turned away from you with the left hand, on the left side of the tin - allowing left-handers to use their stronger and more comfortable hand.
Using a left-handed tin openerUsing a left-handed opener gives more comfort and control.
Using a right-handed tin openerPositioning is awkward when using a right-handed opener.

How kitchen knives are left-handed

If you always cut bread slices that start off wafer thin and end up as doorstop wedges, it is probably because of the bread knife you use. A right-handed knife has the serrations on the left side of the blade, so that they counteract the natural twisting motion of the hand to give a straight cut. A left-hander has problems with these knives as the effect of the hand twisting and the serrations combine to give a curved cut. All of our left-handed knives have the serrations on the right side of the blade to avoid this problem.

Cutting with a left-handed knife

The correct way
The serrations are on the right side of the blade to counterbalance the natural twisting motion of the left hand, thus giving a straight cut.

Cutting with a right-handed knifeThe wrong way
The serrations on a normal bread knife exaggerate the natural twisting motion of the left hand leading to a curved slice and an overhanging loaf.

This is what our customer have had to say about our left-handed knives:

"I felt I just had to write to compliment you on your speedy service. I have tried the knives already and now have perfectly straight carrot batons, perfect halves in teacakes, thin straight cucumber slices and no sliced fingers! At this rate I might even get to enjoy cooking! Many thanks.'
Allison Townsend - UK

"Just to say how pleased I am with my new bread knife...my son and I can both cut lovely slices now. It is 1st time I've used Internet shopping which was very good. The parcel arrived very quickly"
Melanie - UK

At the risk of making things more complicated... Knives can cause some confusion! Most "normal" knives for right-handers are serrated on the LEFT of the blade - the idea being that the effect of the serrations counter-acts the natural inward (clockwise as you see it) twisting action of the hand, leading to a straight cut. If a left-hander uses one of these knives, the serrations actually REINFORCE the natural anti-clockwise twisting motion which leads to the classic "overhanging" loaf or whatever is being cut. All our knives are serrated on the RIGHT side of the blade to give the correct balance action for left-handers and generally people are very pleased that they can suddenly cut straight!

All our knives are custom-made for us with serrations on the other (right) side. That said, some manufacturers DO make their standard knives with the serrations on the right and when we have asked them why, they are at a loss to explain!

It comes down to personal preference and maybe a bit of practice at cutting "naturally" if you are used to twisting a right-handed knife. On the other hand, if you already have knives with serrations on the right of the blade you may not gain anything apart from the quality of our knives.

How peelers are left-handed

Peeling left-handed The best motion for peeling vegetables is to move the peeler towards the body. This is not possible with a right-handed peeler held in the left hand as the cutting edge is facing the wrong way. For this reason, many left-handers have developed a technique for peeling vegetables moving the peeler away from the body, and have the scraped knuckles to prove it!

Our peelers are either fully left-handed or double-edged so they can be used in either direction.

How secateurs are left-handed

There are two types of secateur blades: anvil and bypass. It is the bypass secateurs (which have a cutting action similar to a scissor) that particularly benefit from a left-handed design. With the blades reversed and hand grips comfortably positioned for left-hand use, the cut is clean and sharp - vital to prevent damage to the plant and possible infection.

How tapes are left-handed

Left-handers usually hold the measure in their left hand and pull with the right, but the numbers are always upside down! When measuring with a retractable measure, most of us would like to measure from right to left. We lock the start of the tape over the right end of what we are measuring then hold the case with our left hand and pull to the left to expand the measure.That's why our range of measuring tapes have the scale (in imperial and metric) running from right to left just like our rulers. Our range includes a dressmakers tape and two sizes of steel retractable measures.

With the retractable measures, there is still the problem of which hand you use to mark with once you have measured the correct length, but right-handers have that as well!

How craft knives are left-handed

The blade on a craft knife is extremely sharp, so the correct design and a comfortable secure grip in the left-hand is absolutely vital. Our craft knives have a trapezoid shaped blade with a dual edge and it can be easily set up before use to work for a left-hander, with the thumb control for the blade on the correct side.

Our Safety Retractable Blade kinfe uses the left thumb to push out the blade for use, but the pressure whilst cutting keeps the blade out without any further use of the thumb. Once the blade is lifted from the cutting surface, the blade automatically retracts rapidly back into the handle for safety. This is ideal where you need to keep picking up and putting down the knife between jobs.

The auto-locking craft knife has the same shaped blade, but can be locked into 5 different cutting positions, again using the left thumb. Comfortable non-slip rubber grip makes these knives strong, accurate and comfortable to use. Both are ideal for cutting paper, cardboard, carpet and all arts and crafts.

CAUTION: Blade extremely sharp. Handle with care. Keep out of reach of children!

How pencil sharpeners are left-handed

The advantages of a left-handed sharpener are that the pencil remains held in the left hand and is turned away from you in the natural, anti-clockwise motion... and the shavings fall away from the body and not in your lap! Or, even better, try one of our container sharpeners that catches all the shavings.

How triangular barrels are left-handed

Although not specifically left-handed, our triangular shaped pens and pencils encourage a good "tripod" grip for all ages. The ones with over-sized triangular shaped barrels are easier for little hands to manoeuvre and grip. They are suitable for all ages, but are particularly useful for encouraging little left-handers to hold the pencil correctly - between the first two fingers and resting on the third - which they often find difficult to do. (See our Handwriting Factsheet for more tips on helping children with their writing).

How boomerangs are left-handed

Anything Left-Handed stock a range of left-handed boomerangs and they are an item that always leads to great hilarity - from right and left-handers alike. However, they are very different to the right-handed versions, indeed they have to be designed completely backwards or they would dive into the floor rather than flying! But first, why does a boomerang "boomerang" at all?

Left handed boomerangEach arm of a boomerang is shaped like the wing of an aeroplane, with a rounded leading edge and a sharpened trailing edge. The upper edge is longer than the lower edge which leads to a low pressure area above the wing (as originally established by a scientist called Bernoulli who had this principle named after him). Therefore, as it rotates, the boomerang produces a lifting force called "aerodynamic lift". A spinning boomerang acts as a gyroscope and the combination of the aerodynamic lift and the gyroscopic effect produces an effect called "precession" which determines the flight path of the boomerang. Overall, these effects make for a very stable and accurate flying object, which is why it gained its popularity as a hunting weapon. The boomerang now enjoys general popularity and is used in fiercely contested competitions throughout the world.

A typical boomerang flight can last 8 to 10 seconds and the boomerang may travel 30m out and back in a curved flight pattern. The boomerang travels at about 60 mph and spins at about 10 revolutions per second (600 rpm).

The shape of the "wings" of the boomerang is critical and, if a right-handed boomerang is thrown with the left hand, the leading and trailing edges are reversed and it produces negative lift - causing it to hit the floor very quickly! A specially designed left-handed boomerang avoids this problem. The Skyrider boomerang is suitable for older children and adults, whilst the Trailblazer (pictured) is a long-range weighted boomerang for more experienced throwers.

How calligraphy pens are left-handed

The problems we have with a normal fountain pen nib scratching and digging into the paper are exagerated even more with calligraphy nibs that tend to be a lot wider. It is important that the nibs are cut off in the correct direction so that a left-hander can write with them and the end of the nib is flat on the paper. With a right-handed nib, we have to turn it sideways to make it write and end up with all the letter thicknesses the wrong way round!

How Stabilo S'move pens are left-handed

The new Stabilo S Move Easy Left-Handed Rollerball is a very exciting development in pen design for left-handers. By carefully studying the most comfortable and efficient position for the left-hand to write most effectively and then moulding the pen body to exactly fit that position, Stabilo have created a pen which remains perfectly placed whilst writing, with little or no effort, and requiring the lightest of grip on the moulded rubber fingerplate. Anything Left-Handed are delighted to launch this pen in the UK and recommend it highly both as a training aid for teaching children to write, and as a comfortable and stylish pen for adult left-handers to enjoy.

Stabilo 'S Move in use

The funky, freaky pen that looks the part, writes like a dream and is great fun to use. Unusually, the pen has been made with a special left handed version with the grip moulded for a comfortable fit in the left hand. Top marks to Stabilo for looking after the left-handers for a change!

With its exchangeable rollerball tip, which is new after each refill, the Stabilo 'S Move Easy glides perfectly over the paper and it can be erased with a fountain pen eraser just like normal fountain pen ink.

Thanks to its extra-soft grip area, the 'S Move easy is always comfortable to use. It also looks so special because its shape fits perfectly into your hand, making sure you feel extremely comfortable while you write.

Stabilo S Move pen

It is available in 4 colour combinations and each comes with three spare blue ink cartridges that also each incorporate a new roller ball tip. You can also get spare packs of 6 blue ink cartridges.

Stabilo S Move Easy Blue + Dk blueStabilo S Move Easy Yellow + RedStabilo S Move Easy Grey + OrangeStabilo S Move Easy  Cartridges

You can buy all the styles of the great new 'S Move Easy pen in our on-line shop now.

Right-handed version

We have had so much demand for this pen from families with left- and right-handed children that we have stretched our normal rules and started stocking the right-handed version as well. You can purchase these in our online shop now.

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