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Tips for Holding Chopsticks Properly

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Holding chopsticks
Tony Hutchings/Photographer's Choice/Getty Images
It's helpful to know how to use chopsticks properly when you eat Japanese food. It's considered impolite to hold chopsticks with five fingers in Japan. Take a look at the photo for your reference. It might take some time to practice, but it's worth learning how to hold chopsticks properly.

Basics: How to Hold Chopsticks:

  1. Hold the upper chopstick with the index finger, the middle finger, and the thumb.
  2. Put the other chopstick between the bottom of the thumb and the tip of the ring finger.
  3. Move the upper chopstick only when you pick up food.
Bad Chopsticks Manners in Japan:
  • Waving chopsticks above food dishes.
  • Sticking chopsticks into food instead of picking them up with chopsticks.
  • Picking a cup or bowl up with the hand that is holding chopsticks.
  • Sucking chopsticks.
  • Sticking chopsticks vertically into a bowl of rice.
  • Passing food directly from one's chopsticks to another's chopsticks.
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