Functional Grasp Patterns

Tripod grasp with open web space:  The pencil is held with the tip of the thumb and index finger and rests against the side of the third finger. The thumb and index finger form a circle.

Quadrupod grasp with open web space:  The pencil is held with the tip of the thumb, index finger, and third finger and rests against the side of the fourth finger. The thumb and index finger form a circle.

Adaptive tripod or D’Nealian grasp  :  The pencil is held between the index and third fingers with the tips of the thumb and index finger on the pencil. The pencil rests against the side of the third finger near its end.

Immature Grasp Patterns

Fisted graspThe pencil is held in a fisted hand with the point of the pencil on the fifth finger side on the hand. This is typical of very young children.

Pronated graspThe pencil is held diagonally within the hand with the tips of the thumb and index finger on the pencil. This is typical of children ages 2 to 3.

 Inefficient Grasp Patterns

Five finger grasp:  The pencil is held with the tips of all five fingers. The movement when writing is primarily on the fifth finger side of the hand.

Thumb tuck grasp:  The pencil is held in a tripod or quadrupod grasp but with the thumb tucked under the index finger.

Thumb wrap grasp:  The pencil is held in a tripod or quadrupod grasp but with the thumb wrapped over the index finger.

Tripod grasp with closed web space:  The pencil is held with the tip of the thumb and index finger and rests against the side of the third finger. The thumb is rotated toward the pencil, closing the web space.

Finger wrap or interdigital brace grasp:  The index and third fingers wrap around the pencil. The thumb web space is completely closed.

Flexed wrist or hooked wrist:  The pencil can be held in a variety of grasps with the wrist flexed or bent. This is more typically seen with left-hand writers but is also present in some right-hand writers.