Ever Wondered Why People Wear Watches On Their Left Hand?

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5:29 pm 11 Aug, 2016

Out of reflex we always tie watches on our left wrist, but have you ever wondered why?

Normally, such thoughts don’t cross one’s mind. We are used to wearing  wrist watches on the left hand, and that is that.

If you notice carefully, there are exceptions to this rule as well. Although a majority of people wear watches on the left wrist,  some of them wear it on the right . We also hear that men are supposed to wear watches in the right arm and women in their left arm.

It should not come as a surprise that these statements are backed by science and also have a historical background.


Let’s begin with history first 

Historically, there were only pocket watches; they had become most popular during the Boer war. Officials carried them in custom fitted leather pouches, which were strapped to their wrists. Although useful for coordinating military activities, they were awkwardly large. And this was not the only design defect. The watches were fragile with huge balance wheels, susceptible to breaking easily.

To keep them protected against damage, they were best kept for one’s less dominant hand, in most cases the left one. Not that they were too expensive. But certainly they fit into the bracket of any other household appliance, used for one’s convenience.

What science has to say 

So, here we must consider that not everyone wears a watch in the left wrist. Most people wear it in the left, with a small fraction of people wearing it on the right wrist.

The logic here is that a majority of the people in this world are right handed. When the trend of wearing watches on the wrists picked up pace, people found it convenient to wear it on their left hand.

The reason behind it is simple. While working with your right hand it becomes easy to keep a check on the watch to your left. One can easily look at the time on the left wrist, while at the same time working with the right. If one was wearing a watch in the right hand, things may turn clumsy.

Same goes for  smart watches! Operating them with your left hand will be  difficult and so they are also tied to the left hand.

Lastly, the argument: do men have to wear their watch on right wrist and women  on the left?

This is only argument in the entire discussion, which has no scientific backing. Maybe, it is a cultural thing in certain communities, or it could simply be a stereotype.

People wear watches to suit their convenience. Commonly they wear it in the non-dominant hand.


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