I have been pretty stagnant in the department of learning new motor skills, so I decided to challenge myself big time. I am learning to throw with my left hand. As a right handed dominant person, doing things with my left hand is somewhat challenging. When I had an accident some years back and had to have surgery on my finger to try to put it back together, my right hand was out of commission for about 6 weeks, totally, so wrapped up that I knew was there only because of the brutal pain. I learned to write with my left hand then, but did not keep it up and you know what they say...use it or lose it.
But Robbie and I play ball when I am filling the buckets with water. I want to throw the ball to the east where it cannot get easily lost, and that means my right hand is somewhat impaired unless I step well away from the bucket and hope I get back without it running over. The idea to try to learn to throw left handed occurred a while back and I have been slowly improving. I am not able to aim at a branch and hit it. If it was ever required that I should pitch for a league with my left hand, I think I could do that easily now. Unlike my writing, I will endeavour to keep this skill by practicing daily. My right handed throwing gets a good workout throwing a stick for Robbie, as I am watering the critters, but the left is for throwing the ball when filling the buckets.
What does learning a new motor skill do for an old brain? It challenges the fibres to fire differently and the current from hand to brain is developed where none was there previously. This new brain motor activity can only assist in keeping the synapses firing and that is important to me. My mother had early dementia and although she is still alive today, she knows no one and is not communicative. I cannot guarantee learning new tricks and studying will stave off that dreaded disease, though I am certainly hoping it will help. Don't you agree?