Eating with chopsticks can be a bit of a challenge for people who are not familiar with these utensils or do not use them often. Here are some tips for eating with chopsticks:
- Hold the bottom chopstick with your thumb, bracing it against your middle finger. This chopstick should not move during use; it remains still for stability.
- Hold the top chopstick between the tip of your thumb and your forefinger, the way you would hold a pencil. The movement of your forefinger will cause the chopstick to move, allowing you to grip things.
- The further back on the chopstick you hold it, the more grip strength you will have. Avoid holding the chopsticks too closely to the tip.
- When eating rice, it is customary to use the chopsticks as a shovel. Eat with the bowl close to your face and burrow the chopsticks under the rice, piling it on top, rather than trying to grasp the rice.
If you need time to practice using chopsticks, you can use a set of “trainer” or beginner chopsticks, which Asian children use when they’re beginning to eat. You can buy a pair of beginner’s chopsticks at an Asian market or make your own pair.
To turn disposable chopsticks into a training set, use a rubber band to connect the chopsticks together at the wide end or top. Next, roll up the chopstick wrapper. Insert this roll of paper between the chopsticks where you’ve put the rubber band. This will create a tweezer-like fulcrum that enables you to grab food easily without struggling.