View Full Version : Stick shift with ADHD, thoughts?


Caco3girl
10-12-16, 09:19 AM
My son has some pretty severe ADHD, generally he has a fog around his brain. There is not much that penetrates it and he drifts off in his own head or stares at a wall a LOT. I am very worried about him driving next year.

My main concern with him driving is that his brain will wander off at a very bad time. I was thinking that maybe if he was driving a manual/stick shift car that maybe that would lessen the wandering effect because he would have to be constantly focused on making the car move. In the past he has ridden motorcycles and been fine with the shifting aspect.


Thoughts?

Little Missy
10-12-16, 03:31 PM
I don't believe so. It becomes a thoughtless thing you do when driving and you can hear and feel what the engine wants.

Fuzzy12
10-12-16, 06:24 PM
I've always driven a manual car and once you've learnt how to change gears it doesn't need a lot of attention. Actually I'm not sure. In heavy traffic at least it is something that keeps you busy. Maybe it's a good idea but I wouldn't rely on it.

DJ Bill
10-12-16, 06:46 PM
In town it will keep you busy...on the open road, not so much. If the car is an underpowered one where you HAVE to shift to keep up with traffic that also will keep a driver occupied.

casper
10-12-16, 10:42 PM
agreed, in town it will keep your attention, on the freeway not so much

someothertime
10-13-16, 12:22 AM
For me..... 99.7% of the time... Driving is one of the things I do very well...... the competing focus points are immersing and stimulating.....

stef
10-13-16, 06:35 AM
I have a colleague with adhd and she purposely drives a scooter in paris because it helps her focus; i think this would only work for people who are very focused on driving, in the first place.

It would be the opposite for me! i dont drive anymore its for the best. I'm just way too distracted. If i also had to worry about shifting gears with a stick shift in traffic, I certainly would have gotten in an accident.

Bluechoo
10-13-16, 11:48 AM
There are good habits that will help stay focused while driving, whether manual or automatic. Keep the radio off, and hands at 10 and 2 o clock at all times (obviously less so when driving a stick). I get lazy and notice right hand is resting on the middle console, and when I force myself to grab the wheel again it is like refocusing. It is a tactile thing, so it definitely helps trigger some mindfulness.

Then, I just focus the road and cars that are immediately around me. That seems to help too. So many accidents happen because people zone out and forget about the car right next to them when they switch lanes.

These habits take time to implement, but they can be life savers.

CrazyLazyGal
10-24-16, 10:28 PM
agreed, in town it will keep your attention, on the freeway not so much

My experience as well. I think if you drive a lot in town there might be some residual subconscious added focus on the highways because you've developed a habit of driving with more attention.

Overall I think driving a stick shift can't hurt. It also prevents "can I borrow your car" requests :p

Make sure the meds are still in his system when he drives. Nighttime driving is more difficult for many reasons, and if the meds have worn off, it's even worse.

The roads would be safer if all cars were stick because there would be less distracted driving such as phones and texting. The amount of distracted driving among people without ADHD is terrifying.


There are good habits that will help stay focused while driving, whether manual or automatic. Keep the radio off, and hands at 10 and 2 o clock at all times (obviously less so when driving a stick). I get lazy and notice right hand is resting on the middle console, and when I force myself to grab the wheel again it is like refocusing. It is a tactile thing, so it definitely helps trigger some mindfulness.

Then, I just focus the road and cars that are immediately around me. That seems to help too. So many accidents happen because people zone out and forget about the car right next to them when they switch lanes.

These habits take time to implement, but they can be life savers.

Completely disagree about the radio. The radio provides some stimulation that prevents me from drifting too much.