STEERING A CAR TECHNIQUES – HOW TO STEER A CAR
The basic push pull steering technique will be demonstrated by your driving instructor during the cockpit drill on your first driving lesson.
Throughout the first few lessons however, don’t be too concerned in keeping a strict steering technique for the car as priorities should be keeping general good control and observation. Your instructor will continually prompt you throughout driving lessons to improve your push pull steering technique if applicable.
For the driving test, although it is essential to maintain a high level of control when steering the car, it is a myth that examiners are looking for a constant and disciplined push pull steering technique throughout the entire driving test.
Providing you keep consistent good control of your car in terms of steering, this is primarily what they are assessing you for. Everybody is a different size and height, have different seating positions using different cars. Certain cars also offer a wide range of options for adjusting the steering wheel and seating positions, whilst others offer a basic minimum. As a result, a drivers hand position on the steering wheel will factor these variations into account.
The process of teaching learner drivers this technique is therefor to provide a safe method that otherwise they would not correctly understand how to use the steering wheel. Feel free to adapt this method to a technique that is more comfortable to you, although keep it similar and try not to cross your hands whilst steering too much.
STEERING WHEEL HAND POSITION
Holding the steering wheel 10:2
Holding the steering wheel at 9:3
There are three recognised methods that are taught to hold the steering wheel. If you imagine the hands on a clock, these positions are known as 10:2 and 9:3. 10:2 is the method traditionally taught by driving instructors, though is now becoming less common in favour of a lower hand placement such as 9:3 which is deemed a more natural and comfortable position.
Those that are taller, using a vehicle with limited steering and seating positions may find that griping the wheel higher in the 10:2 position more comfortable. Many however prefer the relaxed 9:3 position. Essentially, once you have appropriately adjusted the seating and steering position, use which ever steering position you prefer.
Before you start learning to drive, practice these steering ‘push and pull’ techniques using a diner plate. It takes a little time to perfect, but once perfected, it will allow you to concentrate on more important things whilst actually driving such as gears and observation. Hold the steering wheel firmly but also keep it relaxed. Gripping the steering wheel too tightly will become uncomfortable and will make you feel more tense.