Home Alone: Why Hand Position Matters

Categories: All About Touch Typing, Typing Practice, Typing Tips and Tricks |

When you’re touch typing, the Home Row is where the four fingers of your left hand and the four fingers of your right hand will remain whenever they are not in use. Positioning your fingers on the Home Row is always the starting position whenever you begin a touch typing session. So get into the habit of placing these eight fingers on the eight corresponding keys on the Home Row. Here’s where your fingers should be when they’re properly positioned in “rest” mode:

The little finger on your left hand is on the letter A.
The left-hand ring finger is on the letter S.
The left-hand second finger is on the letter D.
The left-hand index finger is on the letter F.
The little finger on your right hand is on the semicolon.
The right-hand ring finger is on the letter L.
The right-hand second finger is on the letter K.
The right-hand index finger is on the letter J.

Rest both of your thumbs on the space bar. You can use either thumb to press the space bar. Some people use only one thumb (for example their left), while others use a combination. This is really a matter of personal preference.

If you’re new to typing, take some time to get comfortable with the location of the Home Row keys and proper Home Row finger placement. When your hands learn to automatically return to this position, you’ll be able to accurately position your fingers to hit the correct keys when typing. If your hands are off to one side, you might think you’re reaching for the right key, but you’ll be missing it and will type the letter or number to its left or right instead. Some QWERTY keyboards have a little raised bump on the “F” and “J” keys. The bumps make it easier to feel your way onto the correct index finger home keys. Once your index fingers learn the location of the correct Home Keys, placing your remaining fingers on their proper keys is simple.

Note: If you feel cramped in the home row position, try spreading your fingers a little. Space can be a problem with a smaller netbook or laptop keyboard.

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