Left- and right-handed people are likely to perceive the length of their arms differently, says a new study.
According to researchers, there are areas in the brain devoted to arms, legs, and various parts of the bodies.
In left-handed people, there is an equal amount of brain area devoted to the left and right arms in both hemispheres. However, for right-handed people, there is more cortical area associated with right arm than the left.
During the study, an international team of researchers asked the participants to estimate their perceived arm length and how far they could reach with their arms.
To estimate arm length, the volunteers would hold out each arm while a researcher standing in front of them would adjust a tape measure-the volunteers had to indicate when they thought the tape was the same length as their arm.
The findings showed differences in the way left- and right-handed people perceive their arms.
Left-handed participants judged both of their arms to be the same length, but right-handed participants underestimated the length of their left arm and consistently perceived their right arms as being longer.
The researchers suggest that body maps in the brain may influence how we perceive our physical bodies - for example, if there is a lot of brain area associated with our right arm, we will view it being as longer compared to our left arm.
The results are reported in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.