In the know: Proper steering hand position

woman driving

There’s always a proper way of doing things, like holding your steering wheel. When done correctly, a driver can make turns safely and reach for the shift knob with ease. Conversely, one may find himself with his arms crossed, struggling to commandeer the vehicle.


  • How does proper hand position improve driving safety?

    Proper hand position can help improve your reaction time, allow you to make turns safely, and reach for the shift knob easily.
  • What are the two common driving hand positions?

    The two common driving hand positions are 10:12 and 9:3.
  • woman driving

    That said, we’re taking a quick look at proper steering hand positions when driving.


    The 10:12 position is one of the most accepted and recommended steering hand positions, at least by our fathers and uncles. It allows drivers to easily control and rotate the wheel while keeping both hands in peripheral view, so you avoid crossing one arm with the other.

    However, with today’s advancements in technology, experts begin to recommend a new way of holding the wheel.


    With new vehicles sporting more and more features, the steering wheel becomes more of a control panel than a rein. Buttons for audio, calls, driver-assist features, and so on, can be found in strategically-placed corners of the steering wheel. In addition, your arms above the steering wheel can get in the way of the airbags when it deploys.

    The 9:3 position, therefore, places a driver’s hands on the lower side section of the wheel giving way to better visibility of the buttons on the steering wheel and prevents one’s arms from getting injured should the airbags be triggered.

    It’s also a more relaxed position and many of today’s cars don’t require too much muscle when turning the wheels as they are often equipped with EPS.

    Final thoughts

    woman driving

    Paying attention to where you put your hands on the wheel can help improve safety when driving. Make sure to remember these tips when you head out on the road.

    Photos from ZigWheels

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