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How do you shake hands without arms?

Old 11-29-19, 11:21 AM
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Armlesscyclist
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How do you shake hands without arms?

Yes, this is a questions (among many others) I get asked a lot, because I canīt do a normal hand shake.

I am a 36 years old woman and I was born without arms. All my life I have been using my feet and toes as hands and fingers, and I can do everything with them.

But how do you think I do a hand shake ??

Also I am curious what you would ask me if you could ask me anything ?
I am used to answering tons of questions and I love to share with people, so just ask anything you want

Have a nice weekend

Last edited by Armlesscyclist; 11-30-19 at 01:04 AM. Reason: Forgot gender
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Old 11-29-19, 12:00 PM
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A belly bump would work for me...
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Old 11-29-19, 12:12 PM
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The same way you hug.
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Old 11-29-19, 05:46 PM
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Headbutt?
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Old 11-29-19, 06:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Armlesscyclist View Post
Yes, this is a questions (among many others) I get asked a lot, because I canīt do a normal hand shake.

I was born without arms, and all my life I have been using my feet and toes as hands and fingers, and I can do everything with them.

But how do you think I do a hand shake ??

Also I am curious what you would ask me if you could ask me anything ?
I am used to answering tons of questions and I love to share with people, so just ask anything you want

Have a nice weekend
Just a wave and 'hi, nice to meet you'?.

Any video of you on a bicycle? Seeing a wheelchair racer or a hands/arms-only cyclist is not that unusual in my area on the USA, but I've never seen someone without arms and how they adapt to it. Just curious and interested, not meant to be offensive.
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Old 11-29-19, 07:26 PM
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Just nod you’re head.
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Old 11-30-19, 07:24 AM
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Head nod for strangers, shoulder bump for my good friends.
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Old 11-30-19, 07:42 AM
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I am going to go out on a limb here and say you don't. (No pun intended.)
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Old 11-30-19, 08:09 AM
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Originally Posted by skidder View Post
Just a wave and 'hi, nice to meet you'?.

Any video of you on a bicycle? Seeing a wheelchair racer or a hands/arms-only cyclist is not that unusual in my area on the USA, but I've never seen someone without arms and how they adapt to it. Just curious and interested, not meant to be offensive.
A little searching on YouTube and I found the answer to my own question. Interesting, would love to see one of these bicycles up close. This gal has quite a few videos of how she does things without hands and arms. Pretty interesting:



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Old 11-30-19, 08:51 PM
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I usually ask what the person prefers. Having worked in the health care field for years I'm already accustomed to being around folks with all sorts of differing abilities and disabilities so I'll usually ask after getting to know the person a little. Even many able bodied folks are uncomfortable with physical contact, even handshakes, from strangers so the approach is pretty much the same with everyone: be alert to cues from body language, or simply ask.

One of my college advisors had polio or muscular dystrophy and over the years he had decreasing mobility and dexterity (although he could type remarkably quickly using his thumbs). His hands were mostly clenched in loose fists. We shook hands that way, just grasping his hand. He was a wonderful guy, much loved by his students and made everyone comfortable with regular greetings that way -- or hugs, after getting to know him.

And I have pretty good dexterity with my feet and can pick up stuff with my toes. So if someone prefers footshakes, gimme a minute to doff my shoes and we'll work out something.
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Old 12-02-19, 03:38 AM
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Thank you for all your comments on how I shake hands without arms.

Some of your suggestions really made me laugh, because it would be very funny to do it that way.
Fx the belly bump would be something special. It would need to be a person with a big belly though to make it work, because otherwise my big airbags would be in the way

But here is how I shake hands, and it depends on who I am shaking hands with.

Close friends/co-workers and family I will hug. Of course I canīt hug with arms around the other person, but I usually use my chin to pinch the other personīs shoulder.
Hugging boyfriends, I will put one leg around his body, too.

At my job I get to meet lots of business partners or strangers every day, and here a hug would be inappropriate, and a hand shake is the polite way of greeting each other.
Like in every other thing I do, I use my feet.
When I approach the person, I will quickly slide my right foot out of my shoe/sandal, and lift it up to grap the other persons hand.
Usually the other person get s a little confused and looks very funny in his/her face, but mostly they finally grap my foot and shake it.
I think that 8 out 10 graps my whole foot, and the rest do it in the 'correct way', meaning they put their thumb between my big toe and index toe and then squeeze my foot.

Very rarely the other person refuses to touch my foot for some reason, but most people donīt have a problem with it.
Maybe it is easier for me being a woman and I having very pretty feet (I think) that are taken well care off?

Would you dare to touch my foot if I were to shake foot/hand with you?
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Old 12-02-19, 05:34 AM
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I'm cool with airbags!
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Old 12-02-19, 12:48 PM
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Hey thanks for stopping in! So cool that you are cycling though not having arms.

I had a friend in like 3rd grade that had been born without arms. I remember him being able to do everything with his feet, writing in class was just the beginning. He came over to my house once, he handled utensils to eat of course, and for some reason I have a memory of him changing his clothes. I don't know why, we didn't have a pool or anything. Or maybe he was just telling me about how he did it, or demonstrating.
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Old 12-02-19, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Armlesscyclist View Post
...Maybe it is easier for me being a woman and I having very pretty feet (I think) that are taken well care off?

Would you dare to touch my foot if I were to shake foot/hand with you?
This is the internet. There's something for everyone.

Regarding the occasional awkward moment with foot/handshakes, that's just life. I'm probably the least cool person I know. I'm like Phil Dunphy on Modern Family, a guy who genuinely believes he's the cool dad, but is actually really awkward. To paraphrase Douglas Adams from Hitchhiker's Guide, I'm so unhip it's a wonder my pants don't fall down.

Example: Almost every time someone offers a fist bump I forget the whole routine and end up grabbing and shaking their fist. Because that's how I shook hands with my college advisor. So awkward. But I've learned to celebrate my complete inability to be the cool guy.
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Old 12-02-19, 08:09 PM
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