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By Joe Riding. Instructions Copyright.

You can learn an amazing amount about a person’s character from the study of the hand. Just by the way they hold out their head, gives you a lot of information, before you even start to read the hand.

There are five different ways of holding out your hand when you want someone to read it, and each way tells a different story. Incidentally always read the hand that the person uses most e.g. if right-handed read the right hand and vice versa.

If they ask why you should read the hand they use I tell them the hand you do not use most is your potential, the hand that you use is what you are making of your potential.

When a person holds out their hand to be read, at that point it as all to do with position of the fingers. I will outline the five different ways, and explain what each one means, and believe me this is extremely accurate. Knowing what each finger position means, gives you a great start to any reading.


This hand you will encounter more than any other. The hand is held out, all the fingers are together and the thumb is held almost at right angles. This is the average type of man or woman, the one who is just one of the crowd. For this type I would start my reading as follows.

You are a very down to earth type of person, and I can see that you get on well with most people. You like to be part of the crowd (This is why all their fingers are held together they conform to normal) you are not a loner. You like to mix with other people, and you always call a spade a spade, and when you give your word you usually keep it. You are a family type person and it would not suit you to live on your own.

Your hand shows that you are a good worker, as you always believe in doing a full days work for your money. Otherwise you would have a guilty conscience and you would not be happy.

This would be my opening patter for a number one hand, and as it is the average hand, and the hand is held out in the normal way the average hand would be, most if not all I have said would be true, or near enough.

But there are a lot of average people who have hang ups of one kind or another, and if they have any hang ups it will shown in the way they hold out their hand. I am still talking about the number one hand, and here are some of the variations on how the number one hand is held out.

If when they hold out their hand the fingers are stretched out, so they are actually pointing backwards slightly it means the exact opposite then if when the hand is held out, the fingers are slightly curved towards themselves.

Firstly when the fingers are bent backwards, so the palm is sometimes slightly bowed it means this. The person is to trusting, they expose themselves too much, are rather naïve and believe anything anyone tells them, this type of person probably even believes what a politician tells them. They are gullible, but of course I never tell them that, I will say something like this.

Looking at your hand it tells me you have put your trust in people too much as a result you have been let down a few times. You give people the benefit of the doubt and sometimes you have found they have let you down. But because you have such a trusting nature you will still give people the benefit of the doubt and expect them to keep their word, but sadly this does not always happen. You should try to weigh people up before you commit yourself; you have too trusting a nature.

Before I go any further I wish to point out that only the number one hand has these characteristics. It does not apply to other types of hands, as they often have a totally different outlook on life, it is important to remember this only applies to the number one type of hand.


This person holds out their hand exactly the same as the number one hand, except for one important difference, and it is this. All the fingers are held together except for the little finger, which is held away from the other fingers.

To explain what this means, hold out your own hand fingers together, and then move the little finger away from the other fingers. Quite easy to do isn’t it. Now move your fingers backwards into the too trusting position, and you will find that is quite difficult to do.

Again pull your fingers in towards yourself as in the "non trusting" type, now pull your little finger away from the other fingers, and again you will find it a bit difficult to do. This should help to that show that only a number one hand can be too trusting or totally non trusting, and this feature is not found on other type of hands.

Now getting back to the number two hand, which it he hand straight out, fingers all held together except for the little finger, which is held away from the other fingers. The little finger is known as the Mercury finger, which is all to do with communicating, and into which I will go later. But when this finger is held away from the other fingers, this is what it means.

It means that although the person is down to earth, they also do have an independent streak. The further the little finger is held away from the other fingers, the more independent that person is. When I am doing a reading for a number two hand, I start off the opening patter the same as I would for a number one hand, then I add the following.

Although you get on well with people, and you like to be part of the crowd, you are at the same time very independent. In fact you hate having to rely on anyone for anything. You have always relied on yourself, and you would not have it any other way.

If you do the opening patter the same as you do for the number one hand, and then add the above patter to it, you will be correct in your assumption every time. My method of reading hands is at least eighty five percent accurate, and this is just by looking at the hand, no questions asked. Remember to start off with my opening patter, and then add the independent bit to it. You will always make an impressive start if you follow my method.


The number three hand is held with the two middle fingers held together, but both the index and little finger are held away from the other fingers. The index finger is the one you normally point with, and this finger is known as the “finger of confidence.” Again later I will explain why it is known as the “finger of confidence.”

Start off the reading as you would for a number one hand, then add the independent bit as you did for the number two hand, then add something like the following.

You actually have a bright personality, in fact you have more personality than most people, and you have the ability to a quire some success in your life. However as your ring finger clings to the second finger, to function really well, you do need a partner in life. You are not a loner, and with the right partner to encourage you, and give you a push now and then, you could really achieve whatever it is you wish to achieve.

During my readings I often tell people how I arrive at my conclusions, how it is the little finger is for communications, and the first finger denotes confidence etc. I know I am giving them information, that they would never ever get otherwise, but I find this absolutely fascinates people. Also because you will be very accurate if you follow my method, they know you are accurate, and they do appreciate you telling them a few inside secrets as it were. I only touch lightly on this, but people do feel special if you do this, and they love you for it.


The number four hand again is the same as the number one hand except for the fact that only the index finger is held away from the other fingers. You will not come across this hand position very often, about one person in thirty hold their hand out this way.

Because the index finger is known as the finger of confidence, it denotes that the person has more confidence in themselves than average. If you think about this it becomes obvious. If the person is confident, they would believe in themselves, and they would usually be independent. In other words they would usually have the number four hand.

Therefore a number four hand has confidence, but probably not a lot of ambition, they will be content to go along with things as they are, the anything for a quiet life type of person.

Again I would start this reading as I would for a type number one, then I would add this. “Your hand shows that you do not lack confidence in yourself, but for some reason you do not want to get up and go for it. You are not a go-getter, and you are quite content as long as things are running smoothly. In other words you see no reason to rock the boat as it were. If you did make some goals to achieve more I am sure you would do so, but I think you are content at the moment anyway with things as they are.”

When I read this type of hand, I always measure the first finger against the second finger. If it is as long or longer than the second finger, then often that person is arrogant. Self centred, and thinks he knows it all. Naturally I don’t tell them that, but the information can be useful to you.


The last hand position is totally different than the others. These people hold out their hand with all the fingers apart, none are together, and these are the extroverts of the world. The wider the gap between the fingers, the more extrovert they are. Most people in show business hold out their hand like this, particularly actors.

They have confidence and belief in themselves, and they always want to get up and go, they really like getting things done. Nearly always this type is self-employed, as they like to do their own thing, if that is at all possible. Occasionally it is not so, but after you have checked the shape of the hand you will know. Below is the type of reading I would give to the owner of this kind of hand.

You are a bit different than the average person. You are a do-er. The way you hold out your hand with all your fingers apart shows this. You are an extrovert, and you believe in yourself, and if there is anything you want in life, you will get up and go for it. Everything you achieve will be by your own efforts. While you may not be a loner. You are a survivor, and if left to do everything on your own, with no help, you will survive.

This is how I start my readings for character analysis. This is the opening part, noting and commenting on the hand position. I promise you will be correct, or very nearly correct every time. You will find this opening gives people you read confidence in your ability, and they cannot wait to hear more. When I tell you that I have given these type of readings stood at the bar, I have had a queue of people all around the bar. I promise you I have, and dozens of times at that. This system really really does work.

Anyway the next thing to check is the actual shape of the hand, altogether there are six different hand shapes. But for most part you will in the western world only be dealing with four different types of hands. However I will list all the six and explain the differences.


As life gets more complicated so does the shape of the hand. The basic hand is rarely seen today. People who live close to nature, and have to battle with the elements just to survive have this kind of hand. But as I said the more civilised we become, the more complicated life gets, so does the shape of the hand, so it is rare to see a basic hand today. Please keep in mind that the hand is the extension of the brain, and it develops as the brain develops.

There are a few basic hands here and there, mainly itinerants who when they do work, often labour on building sites, or a similar kind of work.but very few people today have the basic hand.

The basic hand is short and square with short stubby fingers and generally a short or small thumb. The lines on the hand are few and they are usually just the basic lines. People with this kind of hand are usually generous, and would give their last penny away for a deserving cause.

Often they drink heavily, easily lose their tempers and they like to fight to settle arguments. They do not worry much about the comforts of life, and they can put up with the most uncomfortable conditions without a worry in the world.


To check the shape of the hand, hold all the fingers together, this makes it easier to determine the shape. Determining the shape is the most difficult part of reading the hand. But if you persevere it will suddenly come to you, and then it is so easy. But I must stress it usually takes a little while to get this. You will probably have to look at a few dozen hands before you aquire the knack.

The square hand as it implies is square or oblong in shape. The square hand has little or no curve on the outside edge of the palm. In other words follow the little finger down, and the edge of the palm will be level or almost level with the little finger.

The old saying “He is a square” typifies the square hand. They are down to earth, they do not believe anything new until it is proven to them, and they have little imagination. The need security in their life, and are not inclined to take chances. They believe in saving for the future and they are what are known as good solid citizens. They are the dependable type, and if they have enough intelligence they make good managers or supervisors, but they rarely venture out and work for themselves, or make decisions for themselves.

If you tell them, but couch it so it sounds good, you will never be far wrong with the square hand. They are as stated good solid dependable people, but they lack vision. They are generally hard working, and no nonsense type of people.


This shape of hand is very rounded, and often the fingers are long and tapered. This type of hand is usually artistic and sensitive. They are also very good at looking after people. They make good nurses, secretaries artists etc. They often have good psychic ability, they usually abhor blood sports, and they are usually keen on protecting the environment.

They are generally a sensitive type of person, and if their skin is silky to the touch, then this is almost certainly so. However if the hand is soft and spongy which is noticeable when you shake hands with them and feels as though you could squash their hand then beware. This type is usually lax in morals, and is often degenerate. Fortunately you will not come across many people whose hand as this peculiar quality. Also the Walter Mitty’s of this world usually have the conic hand.


This hand is wide at the base and narrower at the fingers. It does in fact look like a spatula, hence the name. This is the hand of the go-getter, and it also belongs to the person who when they hold out their hand, have all their fingers apart. In fact it is rare to find a square hand that hold out his hand with all the fingers apart, this would suggest a rather complicated person.

What makes the spatulate hand different is the curve on the edge of the palm. Sometimes this is a very strong curve and this denotes artistic or creative ability, or sometimes both.
This is the hand of the explorer the pioneer, the get up and go guy, the man who likes to get things done. If the owner of this hand is not self-employed, it is because for one reason or another they have missed their way in life. They are energetic and have a restless kind of energy, and I would bet money that every type of entrepreneur has this type of hand.

Spatulate hands are generally good at making money, or making a success of life. Although other features on the hand can offset this to some degree.

Occasionally you will find a spatulate hand that is the opposite way around. That is wide at the base of the fingers and narrower at the base of the hand. This is unusual, and often they possess the same talents as the normal spatulate hand, however they are often egocentric.


This Hand is exactly what it says a mixture. It can be partly square, partly spatulate, partly conic, or a mix of all three.

These hands have various qualities of the other hands, sometimes they are down to earth, then sometimes they feel like throwing everything to one side and start again. Often they do not know which direction to go. Sometimes they want security, sometimes they don’t. These are the people who never really know what they want.

When you read this type of hand stress the good points, and play down the bad, as they can get depressed quite easily. Although sometimes the good features of each hand are prominent, and as long as they can keep their goals in front of them. They can succeed. As long as you know which features represent which type of hand, you will have little difficulty in reading a mixed hand.


This hand is long with knotty fingers. It is usually a wispy looking hand and not at all robust. The owner of this hand is usually a methodical thinker, more spiritual than worldly, and often they live in a dream world.

This hand is unsuited to the materialistic world, and they often turn to various forms of religion. However you will not encounter many people with this type of hand. If you do encounter them, tell them they are genuine in their belief, and they think of the spiritual side of man etc. This type of hand is mainly found in India and the Far East.


When you have learned all the basics of each hand thoroughly familiarise yourself with each hand shape, it will take a little time to do this. But once you have done it, you can quite easily adapt your readings to suit whichever type of hand you are reading, and you will be at the very least eight five percent correct, I can assure you of that. You will as I pointed out have some difficulty in deciding which shape each hand really is. All I can say is keep trying, then suddenly you will seem to understand it all.

When I see people walking by now, I can usually tell which shape their hand is without actually seeing it. I think that will happen to you after a while, it is a subconscious type of thing, and comes by knowing this system. And actually practising it. You will amaze yourself how accurate you are and this gives you more confidence, and even more insight. This is when you can use cold reading to really amaze people. But it will only come from experience.

If you do follow what I have outlined so far you will do pretty well from the start. The next part is to learn the lines on the hand, and unlike most people think, they are not that important when you are doing a character analysis.

Of course if you wish to go deep into reading palms you can learn more from technical books. But beware of having too much technical knowledge. I feel you are best learning the basics and then putting your own interpretation on them, you will be a better reader for that. This method I am teaching you is so simple and yet so incredibly accurate, is easy to learn, and above all entertains people, and they will queue for your services.

Because it is so down to earth, I am sure you will earn more money using my method, than any other way. Of course once you have learned my method there is nothing stopping you going deeper in the subject if you wish. But remember the deeper you go, the more bogged down you will get with detail and trivia, and then there is a real danger that you will start to bore people, instead of entertaining them.


This is the line that runs from near the base of the index finger, down towards the wrist and it is the line people are most interested in, as they always want to know how long they are likely to live.

Ideally the line should be long and deep. Unfortunately we do not live in an ideal world, and most lines are not like that. However whether the line is long or short, you can easily upset people if you give them negative news regarding the lifeline. So it is best to tread carefully here

If the line is short I say it is average, and I say that in any case the lines change a lot during a persons lifetime (Which is quite true) I say a short line does not mean a short life. With a long lifeline I say it does not mean you will live to a great age, it all depends on your lifestyle. If you smoke a lot, drink a lot, or you go on drugs, you will probably not live anything like as long as you should; it really is down to you, and your lifestyle.

Again if the lifeline is short, I say it is average length which roughly means a normal life span. But again a lot depends on your lifestyle, the lifeline can change a lot during your life. For instance if you stopped smoking went on a healthy diet and exercised regularly the lifeline will go deeper and often it will go longer.

Likewise if you go overboard on drinking, smoking, drugs etc., it is quite possible that the line will grow fainter, and in some cases part of it may disappear. (This incidentally is true) It is an advance warning that you may not live as long as you should unless you change your lifestyle. I feel it is important to tell people that lines do change, often depending on their health, so if it is a short line they can often do something about it.

Ti digress here it is a fact that the lines can change a lot during your life. Sometimes they can change a great deal in as little a time as six months or so. As I said it all depends on the kind of life you are living.

There are many lines on some hands, and not many lines on other hands. When doing character analysis I just concentrate on the major lines, which are the lifeline, the headline, and the heartline.


This is the line running across your hand starting on the palm below the little finger. There are two lines running across one below the other. The top one, that is the one nearest the fingers is the heartline.

This line is usually curved, and I say to the client the more curved the line is the more emotional the person is. If the line is straight the person is more unresponsive in their emotions and can be classed as rather cold.

When the line is straight I usually say something like the following. You hide your emotions, and you do not let your heart rule your head, you are level headed and your logic rules more than your emotions. I feel this is a nice way of putting it.

If the line is strongly curved upwards, it often suggests a romance that failed, although I have never really been able to confirm this. If the line is like this I usually say that they have had traumatic romance or an affair that failed. My results are about sixty percent, and most of the rest either refuse to comment or some say no. But it is worth asking anyway the client you must remember does not always tell the truth, and you have to decide yourself on this, which can be a sore point for a lot of people.


This is the line that runs across the hand below the heart line. Sometimes it goes all the way across the hand, sometimes only halfway or so. Sometimes the line is straight, sometimes it curves downwards. If the line is straight and only goes partway across the hand, I tell the client that they think logically, but that they are not the type to spend a lot of time studying, that is not their forte.

Whereas if the line goes all the way across the hand, I tell the client that they should use their mental powers more, as the headline shows they have good powers of concentration, and they should put their concentration powers to more use.

If the line is curved downwards it shows a good imagination, and if the line ends in a fork. It shows the client has either the ability or the desire to become a writer.

There are other lines on the palm such as the fate line etc, but I do not mention these, as there is not much data on these that is really reliable. Most people are quite happy if you just talk about the main lines, remember tell them too much about too many things and they will get confused and they cannot then remember what you have told them, and this does not make for a successful reading. Remember they want to remember everything you have told them so do not get to long winded or complicated. A simple reading and explanation satisfies most people as they can then remember most of what you have told them.

That is more or less all I say about the lines. The main purpose of my readings is to analyse the person from their hand. I always say that I may not be one hundred percent accurate, but I will be at least eight five percent correct. I have honestly read thousands of hands, and not one person has disagreed with me yet, which proves that my system is a very effective system.

Well we have gone through the shape of the hand, the position of the fingers, and the lines on the hand. The final part is the shape of the fingers or more precisely the ends of the fingers, and also the fleshly pads below the fingers. There are four different types of finger endings. They can be square, spatulate, rounded or pointed.

They are usually a mixture, just as the person is a mixture of different qualities. The usual mixture is square and rounded, but sometimes they are square, rounded and spatulate. The majority of the fingers are usually one type, with just one or two fingers being another type. Sometimes all four shapes appear on one hand, and sometimes just one type applies to all the fingers, though this is not common. Perhaps one in ten have all the finger ends the same type.

The same qualities are given to the finger ends, as are given to the shape of the hand. For instance square finger ends are down to earth people. Spatulate ends are the get up and go, so you will find part of each of these qualities, and others in one hand to differing degrees.

You also need to know what each finger represents. The index finger, which is the finger of confidence, is the Jupiter finger. The second finger is the Saturn finger, if long inclined to be gloomy and serious. The third finger is the Apollo finger, which is the finger for your talents. The fourth or little finger is the mercury finger, which is for communication.

The thumb is treated differently in some schools of hand analysis, but it is the Venus finger. Venus being the goddess of love, it is sexual power, or a weak thumb shows lack of sexual power.

If for example most of the fingers on a square hand were also square at the ends, then it would make it even more likely that it would have all the tendencies that a square hand possesses. But assume most of the fingers on a square hand were rounded, the a square down to earth side would be softened somewhat, as rounded fingers are more emotional, so in that case e.g. square hand rounded fingers, then you would have a more balanced type of person.

Remember the shape of the hand is the most important when assessing the character, but the fingers play some part, for instance an all square hand, all square fingers, would be a person of no compromise who would only have one outlook and be pretty obstinate. Also the pads below the fingers, which can strengthen that finger for certain qualities that the person may have.

As I mentioned earlier, suppose you come across a hand that is square, but most of the finger ends are spatulate. Admit tingly this would be unusual, but you do come across combinations like this. In this instance you would have basically a person who is down to earth. But part of him wants to get up and go and work for himself, so there is a conflict. Often that person does not know what he wants from life, or which direction to take. They would love to work for themselves, but at the same time the square hand wants security and they cannot make up their mind whether to go for it, or play it safe and opt for security.

This type of hand also has the person who starts off doing something; full of enthusiasm, then just as suddenly will lose interest in what they have started. They rarely accomplish anything worthwhile, and often fall between two stools.

If you have a client who has every finger on their hand rounded, then most of the things they do will partly be decided by their intuition, and again how successful they will be again depends on what shape of hand they have got.

Again if all the fingers are pointed, usually found on a conic hand, then this shows good psychic ability, and this type of person will almost always make their decisions based on their intuition. As I pointed out, it is up to you to assess the balance of their personality from the shape of their hands, finger ends and the pads below the fingers. Follow this and you will very accurate in your analysis.

Another thing the more you are aware of body language the better will be your assessment. You need to study cold reading to be proficient at this. When you are giving a reading to a client always watch their eyes. If their pupils are large they are impressed with what you are saying, but if their eyes look dull or glazed over a little, ask questions, or change direction, because they are not in agreement with what you are saying, even if they never say anything to you.

As you no doubt have discovered by now, very often one thing in a hand balances out with another, and it is up to you to judge which has the stronger influence. Or which feature is more predominant.


The finger pads are the fleshy pads or bumps just below the fingers. The more pronounced a pad is the more that increases that feature, and again you have to balance it out.

For instance take the Saturn finger. This finger represents stability and is the serious finger. If the pad below it is pronounced the subject will be inclined to be serious, worries a lot, and is inclined to get depressed.

Another example is the Apollo finger. This is finger for your talents. If someone has a pronounced pad below the Apollo finger, then it means they have some talent better than average. Of course you do not know what the talent is, but you tell them they have some talent better than average and say perhaps you know what it is, perhaps not, but you should try different things and you may find you are really good at something, or perhaps you already know, in which case use it as much as you can, work on it, to improve it etc. This is what people want to hear so when the pads are pronounced tell them and encourage them.

Take for example the little finger which is the Mercury finger, this is the finger of communication. If the pad is pronounced it means the person has good persuasive powers, is good at getting on with people, and often make very good salespersons.

The mount of Venus, the one below the thumb is nearly always at least fairly pronounced. This is the sex drive, and unless you are devoid of sex feelings, it will be at least reasonably pronounced. If the mount is flattish, then the person is frigid, or not interested in sex, and will have little energy; needless to say you will not find many like this.

If you do not wish to talk about the sex drive, just tell them they have an abundance of energy. Or when it is flattish, tell them they have little energy, they tire easily and a course of vitamins would be helpful, mention the lack of sex drive if you wish, but tread carefully on that subject, be careful how you word it, as people with little or no sex drive are usually aware of this, and it makes them feel inadequate without you adding to this.

I think that just about sums up my simple yet very effective method of hand analysis. Learn each part in sequence, and then put it together if you do so you will find it easy to learn. As I said earlier figuring out the hand shape is the most difficult, but once you have got that the rest is easy. Just a few things to finish off which can help you to

If the index finger is fairly short (It should roughly be the same length as the third finger) then the person lacks confidence. If it is really short, then the person usually has an inferiority complex. Sometimes they have had confidence but for one reason or another have lost it, but everyone I have come across with a short index finger have had a lack of confidence.

If the first finger is longer than the third finger, or as long as the second finger, then the person has plenty of confidence, and sometimes can be arrogant.

Sometimes you will find the third finger is as long as the second finger. Maybe one in twenty have this. I tell them they have what is known as “A gamblers finger”. Then I go on to say, that does not mean they are a gambler in the normal sense of the word, what it means is this.

Should they come to a crossroad in their life where they have to make a big change or take a chance on their future. And they have to take the plunge if they wish to get ahead, then with this type of finger, they will go for it. They may not be successful, but when the time comes they will take the big chance.

Well that just about ends this lesson on hand analysis. As I said earlier if you wish to go deeper there are many books on the subject. But I believe in the KISS formula which is of course keep it simple stupid. If you keep it simple your own intuition will improve sometimes quite dramatically, as you will not always be searching for complicated explanations, and it is also much easier for your client to follow what you are talking about.

This method is not only very accurate, but if you do it right, it entertains as well. You can have a queue of people and because all the hands are different on two readings will sound alike, or rarely anyway. This give people more confidence in you, as you are not just doing a standard cold reading which is okay on a one to one, but if you do readings as I do. With a lot of people around sometimes, this way is different every reading, and the people are entertained, because it is an accurate, but light hearted approach will everyone really seem to like

This way you will get as many readings as you want. This of course gets you the money and everyone is happy. Keep working at it, keep busy and stay well.

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