Effect of Pencil Grasp on the Speed and Legibility of Handwriting in Children Journal Articles uri icon

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  • Abstract OBJECTIVE. Pencil grasps other than the dynamic tripod may be functional for handwriting. This study examined the impact of grasp on handwriting speed and legibility. METHOD. We videotaped 120 typically developing fourth-grade students while they performed a writing task. We categorized the grasps they used and evaluated their writing for speed and legibility using a handwriting assessment. Using linear regression analysis, we examined the relationship between grasp and handwriting. RESULTS. We documented six categories of pencil grasp: four mature grasp patterns, one immature grasp pattern, and one alternating grasp pattern. Multiple linear regression results revealed no significant effect for mature grasp on either legibility or speed. CONCLUSION. Pencil grasp patterns did not influence handwriting speed or legibility in this sample of typically developing children. This finding adds to the mounting body of evidence that alternative grasps may be acceptable for fast and legible handwriting.


  • Schwellnus, Heidi
  • Carnahan, Heather
  • Kushki, Azadeh
  • Polatajko, Helene
  • Missiuna, Cheryl
  • Chau, Tom

publication date

  • November 1, 2012