Let Your Fingers Do the Walking

A signer can show many movements by simply moving the index and middle fingers into various positions. This handshape is a classifier and the hand position is an upside down “V,” and it is used to demonstrate movements or body positions. Here are common movement signs.

The application of the inverted “V” classifiers, when used by nurses and medical professionals, is extremely helpful. These professionals are able to demonstrate to patients how they need to be positioned for physical therapy, procedures, tests, examinations, or for their comfort.

To sign “lie on side,” place the right “V” hand onto your left palm, on the edge of either the index or middle finger, depending on which side you want to demonstrate.

To sign “roll over,” place the right “V” hand, palm down, onto your left palm, then flip the “V” hand over. A cute way to demonstrate you “didn't sleep at all last night,” is to make this movement several times, because you tossed and turned.

To sign “swing,” form the sign for “sit,” then swing your hands back and forth, imitating sitting on a swing.

SIT: Bend the knuckles of your right inverted “V” hand over your extended left “H” hand. Visualize legs dangling over the edge of a chair.

WALK: Make an inverted “V” with your index and middle fingers and alternately swing the fingers, imitating walking.

JUMP, HOP: Place the inverted “V” onto the left open palm, then pull up while bending both fingers and knuckles, imitating jumping.

STAND: Use your index and middle fingers to make an inverted “V.” Place the fingers onto your left open palm, imitating a pair of legs standing.

STAND ON ONE LEG: Use the index and middle fingers to make an inverted “V,” onto the left open palm, then pull up one finger.

KNEEL, CRAWL: To sign “kneel,” place the knuckles of the inverted “V” hand onto the left open palm. To sign “crawl,” alternately move the knuckles forward, imitating the movement of crawling.

FALL: Place the inverted “V” hand onto the left open palm. Now make the “V” jump off the end of your fingers, imitating falling. This is “fall” as in physically falling, and then there is a different sign for “fall” as in autumn.

LIE DOWN: Place the right “V” hand, palm down, onto your left open palm.

DANCE: Place the inverted “V” onto the open palm, swing your hand back and forth, and kick up your “heels.”

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