Does the “Right Brain vs. Left Brain” Spinning Dancer Test Work?

- asks Aki from San Francisco

[Credit: Internet Movie Database]
By | Posted October 29, 2007
Posted in: Ever Wondered?, Life Science
Tags: , , ,

A new “brain test” floating around online shows a spinning dancer and asks whether you see the image rotating clockwise or counterclockwise. If it spins clockwise, you supposedly use more of your right brain. Counterclockwise, and you’re more of a left brain person. The test then lists functions associated with each side of the brain – the left side includes “uses logic” and “facts rule,” while the right side includes “uses feeling” and “imagination rules.”

A good friend complained that the test told her she was a left brain person, even when she knew herself to not be into left brain associations such as “math and science.” A similar discrepancy was discerned by one of the authors of the Freakonomics blog, when he conducted a quick, nonscientific survey of blog readers, which cross referenced college majors and spinning dancer test results.

If the test sounds flawed, that’s not just because one shouldn’t use spinning dancers to characterize their brain strengths. Rather, the test is coming up inaccurate because it provides a crude view of the “lateralization of brain function,” or the concept that each side of the human brain specializes in certain mental activities.

The concept was born in the 1960s, when Roger Sperry studied epilepsy patients who had had a nerve connection between their hemispheres surgically cut. He found that the left brain hemisphere seemed to possess “speech and a rational, intellectual style,” while the right side was “inarticulate, but blessed with special spatial abilities.”

Modern neuroscience studies using brain imaging technology such as fMRI – which shows active areas of the brain while a person is trying to perform a task – have further suggested that language ability tends to be localized in the left hemisphere, while spatial ability tends to be in the right hemisphere.

However, neuroscience-minded blogs like Neurophilosophy point out that doing any complex mental activity requires cooperation from both sides of the brain, although certain processing tasks required for that activity may be concentrated on one side or the other. In other words, saying that “math and science are left brain functions” is an over-generalized statement.

“It’s not that you have a special math module somewhere in your brain, but rather that the brain’s particular functional organization…predisposes it towards the use of high-level imagery and spatial skills, which in turn just happen to be very useful when it comes to doing math reasoning,” said Michael O’Boyle, a psychologist at the University of Melbourne, Australia, in a public statement through the American Psychological Association.

In fact, the best math students don’t even seem to settle for being “left brain” people. A study undertaken by O’Boyle found mathematically gifted students did better than average students on tests that required both halves of the brain to cooperate. This demonstrated that, while the typical person might lean more heavily on one hemisphere or the other to do mental tasks necessary for math calculation, the brightest among us can more fully integrate both hemispheres of the brain.

The idea that emotion processing only occurs in the right brain hemisphere and fact processing in the left is also misleading. Brain imaging studies have showed that people processed emotion using small parts of both brain hemispheres.

“The popular notion of an ‘emotional’ right hemisphere that contrasts sharply with a ‘rational’ left hemisphere is like a crude pencil sketch made before a full-color painting,” noted a 2005 Scientific American Mind article.

Believing in left brain or right brain people also fails to account for the human brain’s mysterious flexibility and plasticity. People who had half their brain removed encounter some problems – like not being able to move or see from one side of their body – but largely retained or relearned mental abilities such as language in their remaining brain hemisphere. All this research clearly points out that while Nobel winner Sperry was onto something with his lateralization research, trying to fully compartmentalize mental activity by brain hemisphere is imprecise.

So what does the spinning dancer tell us? The whole test is more of an optical illusion than anything else, according to Steven Novella, an academic clinical neurologist at Yale University School of Medicine who blogs on NeuroLogica. When our brains process visual images to make some order or sense of the world, they have to make assumptions. The dancer is just a two dimensional image switching back and forth, but our brains process it as a three dimensional spinning object.

Depending on the assumptions made and visual cues picked up, your brain can make the dancer spin either way. When my friend first sent the test to me, I saw it go clockwise…then switch to counterclockwise as I was staring at the screen. What this tells me about my personality and mental abilities is hardly a no-brainer – the brain test connection to our mental strengths and weaknesses is nonexistent.

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  1. Wow – staring at the illusory dancer is really a great way to avoid working. Despite all the right brain, left brain talk, I find it to be delightfully mindless!

    Christopher Intagliata, October 30, 2007 at 12:16 am
  2. Thanks for clearing this up. I had been wondering about the actual science behind the dancing spinner since I first saw it a couple of weeks ago. I had a hunch that left vs. right brain couldn’t be so simple…

    Katherine, October 31, 2007 at 10:55 am
  3. A. I have to agree with Christopher I.

    B. No matter how I look at it, she’s spinning clockwise. I know it goes the other way, because other people have told me so. Does that mean that I’m an unimaginative right brained person?

    I’m with Jeremy, I think this is bunk, but a really cool optical illusion.

    Dakota BillG, October 31, 2007 at 2:19 pm
  4. Yeah I really don’t understand. I’ve stared at it for like a half hour, and I CAN’T make it spin counter clockwise. It will ONLY spin clockwise…sigh.

    .moses.

    Moses, October 31, 2007 at 7:58 pm
  5. I love this optical illusion. The key is to figure out which leg she is pivoting on, right?
    Kathleen

    Kathleen, November 1, 2007 at 12:27 am
  6. Good article! I publish a poll / survey to know what is more common, saw her spinning clockwise or anti-clockwise. Here is it:
    Right Brain vs Left Brain Survey / Poll – Mind optical illusion

    GooHackle, November 1, 2007 at 1:07 pm
  7. You have to visualize it spinning the other way and focus on small details, then try to change them. If you look at her arms or her lower foot, as opposed to the whole thing, you have a lot more grasp over which kind of cue you get from it. And once it switches, it seems as if you’ve always seen it from that way. I’ve yet to consciously and consistently do it though. I can switch about once every 20 seconds.

    Yarly, November 1, 2007 at 11:18 pm
  8. I can make her kick one foot in front alternating legs, but it gives me a headache after several times.

    Lisa, November 1, 2007 at 11:24 pm
  9. When I first saw it, it was going clockwise then while i was reading the paragraph to the left she started going the other way and i could get her to go back and forth.. it’s interesting.. but I understand the above article that it’s worthless really.
    o well.

    Amanda, November 2, 2007 at 1:43 am
  10. Here’s the trick to making it change directions-don’t look at it DIRECTLY, but look to one side or the other. I did this and made it change directions but when looking directly, it just went clockwise. I agree, cool trick and takes my mind off…homework. Awesome!

    Jenna, November 2, 2007 at 1:48 am
  11. If you want to make her switch directions try to touch your thumb to each of your 4 fingers in order back and forth QUICKLY & watch her spin. Now try it on the other hand. I was bored and can make her turn almost instantaneously doing this….cool distraction from grading my Calculus papers with my Left hand..haha

    Melonie, November 2, 2007 at 2:03 am
  12. I don’nt understand why i can’t make it turn clockwise, I always see it turn counter no matter how I try, Is there somethng wrong with my brain or am i a special person..hmmm

    jon, November 2, 2007 at 2:16 am
  13. I found if I watched her for long enough she started to undress and do this really hot dance! Then it was really hard to stop watching and get any work done.

    fuul, November 2, 2007 at 3:20 am
  14. I found this not only interesting because I went through brain surgery for epilepsy- but also because I had made music boxes for my neurologist and neurosurgeon that played music from the Wizard of Oz. Also- last night I was walking with a group dressed up characters from the Wizard of Oz- I was the Scarecrow- and it was odd that Stumble sent me to this one today.

    LZ, November 2, 2007 at 4:13 am
  15. Wow….
    This only proves that dancing is a great exercise.
    what a body!!!
    If you don’t over analyze the dancer and just look at the “big picture”, you will see her in a fan mode, gently going back and forth. At least this is the way I see her…..

    Ricardo, November 2, 2007 at 4:50 am
  16. Hey, Dakota, Moses and Jon:

    At this website – http://ofb.net/~whuang/imgs/spin/ – there are modified versions of the dancer that help you see both directional views, together with the original. Take a look!

    I found that if I clicked ‘Hide’ for the picture with the direction I naturally saw (counterclockwise) and stared at the other two, I could make myself see the original dancer turn clockwise. Now whenever I see the original dancer, she flips back and forth randomly.

    Jennifer Moser, November 2, 2007 at 7:25 am
  17. Do you see the survey results? very interesting:
    Right Brain vs Left Brain Survey / Poll

    GooHackle, November 2, 2007 at 11:27 am
  18. It’s a sham.

    If you freeze the spinning girl at a certain point, you see that there is actually a slight line on her right thigh that prevents her from appearing to move clockwise:

    http://img87.imageshack.us/img87/6530/spinninggirlhq7.png

    So that would be why so many people are having trouble with it.

    Don’t tell me I’m the only person who’s seen this!

    Elizabeth, November 4, 2007 at 4:55 pm
  19. this must be a guy’s idea of a dancer. one with boobs (or a boob job). it don’t work that way, folks.

    jain doh, November 5, 2007 at 10:41 am
  20. Most people can see it going both ways…….because you have two sides to your brain. Hello. Its just with some people one side may completely overides the other depending on how dominant that side is. Its about spatial relationships and the brains ability to fill in missing detail. If you can do this well you will see the dancer spin clockwise.

    steve, November 5, 2007 at 11:27 pm
  21. I keep on staring at the dancer and thinking: So peole can actually see her going counter-clockwise? I can’t even imagine her going counterclockwise!

    Livya, November 7, 2007 at 12:30 am
  22. I got this dancer in email. It started out clockwise and then went counter clockwise. It changed a couple times and then stayed clockwise. Your explanation solved a lifelong mystery for me. When I was growing up in the late 1940′s we would go to Laguardia airport to pick up my dad from a business trip. There was a radar antenna turning on the roof of the terminal building. I would look at it as it would switch between clockwise and counter clockwise. I knew that it wasn’t really changing direction.

    Pat Coffey, November 7, 2007 at 1:16 am
  23. i can only see clockwise. i must be weird…….

    mabel, November 9, 2007 at 10:47 am
  24. The site http://anuragworld.googlepages.com/mysteryofthespinningdancer explains the reason for the illusion very well. It also has a trick for those who can see the dancer rotate only clockwise or anticlockwise.

    johno, November 9, 2007 at 3:35 pm
  25. How can anyone see it spinning clockwise, I can’t understand at all. It’ just counter clockwise for me and I’m trying really hard lol.

    Music, November 10, 2007 at 1:37 am
  26. If you can’t see the change try taking your hand off your mouse, or move you mouse to your other hand. Or try holding something in your left hand and making counter clockwise circles.

    Victoria, November 10, 2007 at 2:33 pm
  27. all you have to do is look away from the screen or close your eyes when her leg that’s sticking out is about to go behind her. then, at least for me, she changes direction. but don’t close them for too long or she will switch again. freaky!

    Case, November 13, 2007 at 9:54 pm
  28. What does it mean when she is going back and forth instead of making a complete circle?

    melissa, November 21, 2007 at 5:19 pm
  29. If I look at the silhouette first, it spins clockwise for me. But the shadow below spins anti-clockwise for me. So if I look at the shadow first, then the dancer spins anti-clockwise. Very odd.

    Wendy, November 23, 2007 at 10:18 pm
  30. i swore this picture was rigged to spin both directions until i downloaded the gif and counted each time the thing would do a full spin each way…

    what a waste of time.. i feel stupid -_-

    Roy, November 24, 2007 at 1:04 am
  31. I’ve spotted a flaw! That reinforces the clockwise direction.

    The proportions of her swinging leg are fine to the left side of the picture, but there is a software fudge going on on the right side: if she were spinning clockwise we would expect to see her toes progress toward us first, if anti-clockwise her heel would progress away from us first (on the right side of the image remember). This is not so, because both images can’t be generated together, they’ve used one. Sneaky but inevitable!

    With that in mind I can get her spinning in either direction and have managed to get her to flip left and right without taking a complete revolution.

    Graham Webb, November 24, 2007 at 12:16 pm
  32. stare at her foot and concentrate on the foot and soon it will change.

    if you normally see it going clockwise try to see the bottom of her foot.

    if you normally see it going counter-clockwise try to see the top of her foot.

    it worked for me… i feel like im mind controlling my computer.

    ilia, December 3, 2007 at 10:40 pm
  33. I think it has to do if your right or left eye is dominant. I am severely right-eyed, and my partner is severely left-eyed. I had a time making her go anti-c. Just a thought.

    Bob, December 3, 2007 at 11:15 pm
  34. Thanks so much for the article. My daughter had me freaking out because the direction flips back & forth as I look at the dancer. Hers only spins in one direction. I emailed it to her.

    Debby, December 5, 2007 at 9:13 am
  35. What if you take succesive snapshots of her after every (say) a millisecond. That will tell you which way she is spinning ..and no left or right brain involved..?
    Somebody answer.

    Mayank, December 8, 2007 at 8:41 pm
  36. Damn!
    I had a science project with this in it!
    Already got an A= though :P

    Ashley, December 10, 2007 at 1:02 am
  37. At first, I saw it anti-clockwise, and then after a few seconds it changed to clockwise…

    After concentrating, i was able to see it going back and forth, never completing a whole turn, which was really cool!

    Kaitlyn J, December 18, 2007 at 4:16 pm
  38. Most interesting thing I learned is that some people say “anti-clockwise.” I always thought it was only “counterclockwise”

    J, December 19, 2007 at 2:31 am
  39. Ok…i couldnt really see the counter clockwise either UNTIL i stared at the shadow on the ground then she just started spinning the other way!..try it

    Wendy, December 19, 2007 at 3:20 pm
  40. CHRISTOPHER’S COMMENT IS POINTLESS! OBVIOUSLY, HE DOESNT LIKE WORKING EITHER. OTHERWISE, HE WOULD FIND TIME TO 1) LOOK AT THE ILLUSORY DANCER & 2) TO POST A COMMENT!

    EDITH, December 20, 2007 at 6:37 pm
  41. That’s definitely the best optical illusion I’ve ever seen. It’s shadowy eye candy questioning reality…

    After spending considerable amount of time with looking at her do her thing, I was bewildered, I started to wonder if her making a counter clockwise movement was even possible. What was even more distressing was my perception putting me in the category of not thinking with reason… needless to say I wasn’t happy… I looked at her feet, hands, shadow below and the arch in her back to know the front and back body positions and I still couldn’t see a change in movement.

    Then I had a eureka moment. I thought perhaps I need to change my movement to see her change her movement. I looked a away from the screen and glimpsed at her with the corner of my eyes to try see the change… no change… then I put my head down nearer to the keyboard till the image became more dark and when I looked up… voila… there was a CHANGE in movement. It happens every time I do it.

    I think it has something to do with the light. Nice tricky perception.

    Lucky, December 29, 2007 at 11:09 pm
  42. It’s crazy, I can make her change directions…what does that mean?? It’s wierd though. When I change directions, she’s on opposite legs….

    Eling, December 30, 2007 at 3:42 am
  43. at first she goes anti clockwise then she changes to clock wise and so on,but she changed legs also one time right and one time left …check it,
    i think its designed to go bothways to appear as if it changed dir. with concentration …

    meero, December 30, 2007 at 11:48 am
  44. The secret as I see it is that it is an impossible picture of the spin. It has clues embedded in the picture for both directions.
    If you look at, or concentrate only on, the lower legs and the shadow, she spins counter clockwise. If you look at, or concentrate only on, the body position, she spins clockwise.
    Try covering the body and the legs alternately and see what happens.

    Ken, December 30, 2007 at 4:07 pm
  45. I’m with ilia (12/03 comment). Dancer went both clockwise and counter clockwise. I was able to change the direction of the dancer when I concentrated on her feet.

    Lynne, December 30, 2007 at 9:08 pm
  46. Actually…

    There is no right or wrong way to look at the image.

    A little more detail and she goes wherever one wants her to go. The perception of circular motion depends upon where the mind imagines the curving line of her outer and inner thigh is positioned…

    Here is clockwise… http://www.randominc.net/spinninglady/left.gif… and here is counter clockwise… http://www.randominc.net/spinninglady/right.gif

    Lucky, December 31, 2007 at 1:01 am
  47. There is no right or wrong way to look at the image.

    A little more detail and she goes wherever one wants her to go. The perception of circular motion depends upon where the mind imagines the curving line of her outer and inner thigh is positioned…

    Here is clockwise… http://www.randominc.net/spinninglady/left.gif and here is counter clockwise… http://www.randominc.net/spinninglady/right.gif

    Lucky, December 31, 2007 at 1:06 am
  48. I first saw it as counterclockwise. Then I read it was possible to change my perception
    I remebered something. I have the ability to change my perception, to create my reality. You think I would have a better paying job!

    eyeshaveit, December 31, 2007 at 12:58 pm
  49. You can have her rotate to either directions at will by closing your eyes for a second or two whenever you want her to change direction.

    VHawk, December 31, 2007 at 2:30 pm
  50. After watching her turn, first counterclockwise, then, after concentrating on her foot, clockwise, and back again several times, I came to this conclusion: she’s got a sweet figure, and I would watch her turn in any direction she wanted to.

    otherThoughts, December 31, 2007 at 11:26 pm
  51. it all depends on where you statring at the time. when the thighs line up and what your thinking will determine what dorestion. CRAZY!

    LIKE WOAH, January 1, 2008 at 3:46 am
  52. I first saw the dancer spinning clockwise, then after looking away for a few seconds I could see her spinning counterclockwise. Just for the record, I’m ambidextrous.
    Johnny

    Johnny Ham, January 1, 2008 at 5:02 pm
  53. To switch her direction, realize that you have to switch your image of what foot is held outward. close your eyes and believe that her left foot is held out and the image will switch.

    Sarah, January 6, 2008 at 8:57 pm
  54. When her right foot is out she will spin clockwise, if you can imagine her left foot out she will spin counterclockwise

    Sarah, January 6, 2008 at 8:59 pm
  55. Hey, whatever. Nice legs.

    Ron, January 14, 2008 at 2:44 am
  56. i tried for like an hour to make her move anti clockwise and all i could see was her going clockwise then my 6 yo sis came in and moved her finger the way she saw and i concentrated on both and her finger changeed direction and hey presto the dancer changed i still cant do it just in my head but if i move my finger anticlockwise the whole time the dancer changes there you go!!!!!

    davo, January 14, 2008 at 4:05 am
  57. I have taken many tests to determine which side of my brain is dominant. I’m positive it is right in my case. The spinning dancer confirms it as well. However, a person may experience a different result depending on the conditions at the time the test. Looking at her bottom foot and shadow triggers a flip because you are looking for logic/reason to explain what you see, failing to find it your brain tries different approach. Closing your eyes works too, since one side of the brain is visual and the other is imaginary.

    You can actually train yourself to flip the spin as you like on demand without looking at her feet or closing your eyes.

    Sebastian, January 14, 2008 at 1:20 pm
  58. I think we can say this illusion is NOT a definitive diagnosis of whether or not you are right or left brain oriented.

    However… it can be a useful tool to lead you into more testing and further research into who you are, and what your strengths & weaknesses may be.

    I’ve always heard that humans use about 10% of their brain capacity, so there’s a lot of wasted power from the start. Divide that between 2 hemispheres of the brain, and VOILA! More laziness. Put 2 people on one task, and one will always end up doing more work than the other.

    As for myself, I’ve taken IQ tests over the years, and the results show I am definitely a right-brained person with an IQ in the 130-140 range. They say I’m a “Visual Mathematician.”

    I see the dancer spinning clockwise, but with extreme brain effort and lots of coffee, I can make her go counter-clockwise. Thanks!

    Right-Brained Redneck, January 26, 2008 at 8:09 am
  59. This was a nice diversion. The dancer was spinning in a circle counterclockwise at first and continued for several spins until I read that it could go the other way-then she changed directions. After a moment she stopped spinning and just went back and forth not making a complete turn. I wondered what happened till I found this blog. What does it mean if she can go either way or side to side at will? Making her do this gave me a slightly dizzy feeling after several minutes. It was interesting and fun.

    denise, January 26, 2008 at 10:24 am
  60. Wow – I had her rolling around on the floor with me and going in both directions. Oh wait a minute – was that my second or third glass of wine?

    Richard, January 30, 2008 at 3:26 am
  61. Stare at her long enough and a magical pole appears and she begins a very naughty routine….yea dancer!

    Dillinger, January 31, 2008 at 10:34 am
  62. I was going crazy because I could only see it spinning clockwise. Then, I took Lucky’s advice and tried lowering my head down below the screen:

    “then I put my head down nearer to the keyboard till the image became more dark and when I looked up… voila… there was a CHANGE in movement. It happens every time I do it.

    I think it has something to do with the light. Nice tricky perception.”

    When my head is below the monitor and I look up at the dancer, I see it spinning counter clockwise. If I look at it straight on, I see it spinning clockwise. Amazing! And if I bob my head up and down, it’s like she she switches direction mid-circle and only rotates back and forth 180 degrees. Cool optical illusion.

    I doubt that the generalization is very accurate, as this article describes. I’m supposed to be right brained and creative…I wish! In high school, I used to be good in art…but only at replicating other pictures. If I ever had to create anything, it was usually pretty derivative, or crappy. If I’m not left brained, and I’m not right brained, maybe I’m no-brained! Perhaps that is the reason for the monkey sitting on my shoulder telling me what to do…another banana?!

    Phoojoe, January 31, 2008 at 4:26 pm
  63. So are there scientific reasons why some people tend to see it one way more, and other people tend to see it the other way? Does it have anything to do with our brain functions, even if it is not as simple as a left-brain right-brain divide? I’d be curious to learn more about the science behind how this visual illusion works.

    (Also, even if the left-brain right-brain characterization is an over-simplification, could it have SOME influence on how we see the dancer?)

    AJ, February 9, 2008 at 4:51 am
  64. maybe you could try staring at its shadow then realise that the shadow is just coming in and out of the picture, then somehow put that thought onto the dancer itself by slowly moving up. then you can do this by lowering your eyes to the shadow everytime her foot reaches to the edge of the picture, you might find her just going back and forth too…not rotating…however, according to elizabeth, the picture might be buggy, which is true, leading to some of us actually visualising the line down her thigh. i think.

    ZW, February 12, 2008 at 4:11 am
  65. Who cares she can dance for me anytime.
    Kenny, Put down the Cheetos.
    Jeff, no couch dances

    RJ, February 12, 2008 at 10:58 am
  66. The characteristics of the left and right brain may be accurate but ido believe that the control the brain has over movement such as body parts and sight may be inverted or reversed such as the left side of the brain controls the right arm and right brain the left arm. My wife had an injury in her left frontal cortex and her right arm,side, and leg had suffered because of it. I believe that counter-clockwise is right brained and clockwise is left when viewing the dancing illusion. Clockwise may come naturally viewed as moving right which may be controlled by left brain. I remember reading some things like this in pysch 101. I may be wrong.

    Patrick, February 27, 2008 at 9:04 pm
  67. Hi Jeremy

    I always think its good to question but in the same way that the dancing lady may not prove the truth about how our brain works, you can’t really use it as a basis for discrediting theories on how it does work! What matters most I believe is the effective use of ones brain and continously exploring new ways of thinking. Knowing exactly how it works and proving or disproving theories about how it work is not as important. Afterall even the cave man was able to use his brain to some degree and had no idea how it worked. So lets not get caught up in arguing about the workings of an organ that is constantly evolving and lets instead focus on how to use it better!

    Sean M Kelly, March 7, 2008 at 11:00 am
  68. For me, I can make the dancer switch at will. If I want her to spin counter-clockwise (left-brain), I read something on my computer screen, and in a second or 2, she’s spinning counter-clockwise.

    If I want her to spin clockwise (right-brain), I try to be more “visual” and try to notice the different shades of color around the picture or notice other color things, and in a second or 2, she’s spinning clockwise.

    I think it’s really neat. It always works like that for me..

    David K., March 14, 2008 at 3:00 am
  69. Ok, disregard that last post. I can switch it by just looking at the shadow of her foot at the bottom. I guess it’s just an optical illusion..

    David K., March 14, 2008 at 3:04 am
  70. Same as David K.’s first comment: as I started reading thetext on the website, the dancer suddenly started to sping counter-clockwise.
    After walking away and comind back, I mindlessly looked at the screen and she was going clockwise again. Started typing-switched to counter-clockwise….and so on.

    I can’t look at her foot, though…if I do, she “stops spinning” and it’s as if i was looking at a statue from different angles.

    It’s a really really nice optical illusion!

    pam, March 28, 2008 at 4:06 pm
  71. For me the dancer wasn’t spinning at all..It looked more like it was doing the can can. it just flipped back and fourth and back and fourth.

    Hayley, March 28, 2008 at 11:01 pm
  72. it’s all in the shadow! :) And she is gorgeous (the model, not the shadow) Counterclockwise

    G, April 2, 2008 at 1:38 am
  73. Very strange! At my initial look the dancer appeared to be going clockwise, but on my second counter-clockwise. After seeing it the second time, I coud not perceive it going clockwise anymore, I had already conditioned my expectations to interpret the movement.

    Daniel, April 7, 2008 at 1:17 am
  74. Alright the way to see both clockwise and anti-clockwise is to look at the dancers reflection at the bottom of the screen. At first the dancer appeared to be clockwise and then i glanced at the reflection and looked at her feet move differently, then she was moving anti-clockwise

    Joe, April 13, 2008 at 3:48 pm
  75. I have always considered me a bit more “left brained”.
    But the dancer did spin clockwise! I tried to think about her spinning the other way, but it didn’t work. But yesterday, I checked it up again; and now she was spinning anti-clockwise!
    Its a really cool illusion, but as you said, I dont think it tells us much about our brain.

    Vincent, April 14, 2008 at 2:45 pm
  76. This is a really cool illiusion. One of the best I’ve seen really. I naturally see it clockwise and could find no way to see it anti-clockwise. If you’re the same (or if you’re the opposite, try the inverse): cover the bottom half, look away so it’s in the corner of your eye and tell yourself it’s going anti clockwise. If that doesn’t work, trace her higher moving foot with your finger on the screen. Notice it’s an oval? Now you see the foot moving in one direction. Imagine though, instead of the foot being at a high point when away from you, it’s at a high point when closest to you. Tell yourself: no, it’s actually a high point when it’s close to me, it’s moving anti-clockwise. You should then see it moving anti-clockwise with some concentration.

    Wayne, April 17, 2008 at 9:51 am
  77. I’m glad this test isn’t accurate, when I watched her, she kept changing direction every couple of rotations, I was getting motion sickness…but worse than that, I was starting to think I was a bit of a headcase because no one else at my work had the same reaction!

    El, April 24, 2008 at 1:06 am
  78. I can make her switch to CCW but it makes me feel a bit nauseous & slightly paranoid – uncomfortable. but when she pirouettes CW it becomes soothing.

    Maybe it would make a difference if she was a bit more modest and put some clothes on – perhaps an XXL burka would make her look like a sphere which would then stop all the spinning.

    Roon, April 26, 2008 at 2:31 pm
  79. How can I draw my own illusion?

    does somebody know?

    Bothperfect-brained, May 14, 2008 at 2:43 pm
  80. After looking at this I 1st saw the dancer spinning clockwise but as I was reading the text to the left I became aware the dancer was going counter clock.

    Then I found that if I look to the bottom right corner of the picture of the spinning dancer and focus on the corner I can think which way I want to see her & mostly when I look back she is spinning that way. This can be within a second or two. I really have to clear my mind to do this though.

    The amusing thing to me is that she changes from being on her right leg to her left leg – that part kind of caught my attention.

    I do find it very easy to bring her back to clockwise & often only need to glance at her feet.

    Doug M

    Dsm, May 24, 2008 at 2:46 am
  81. I can only see her waving her leg from left to right and the same with her hands. I find it extremely difficult to ‘make’ her spin clockwise and when she does spin in any way it’s usually anti-clockwise.

    But it’s usually just the girl waving her hand and leg in a semicircle from left to right in the background of the image for me.

    Brandon, June 3, 2008 at 8:53 am
  82. i saw it clockwise first for like a couple secs but when i blinked it went CCW and it couldnt change back!!!! lol!!!!

    sherine, June 3, 2008 at 2:34 pm
  83. I looked at the illusion and to me it seemed to be moving in both directions alternatively.. I could make her move in any direction at any time.. Does that mean anything? :)

    Alex, June 5, 2008 at 3:24 pm
  84. wow i looked at it for a second i saw her spin counter clockwise then clockwise and the counter clockwise and so on..in seconds..hope shes not tired lol

    heather, June 8, 2008 at 12:09 am
  85. I never thought it was really about brains. But I do come up with a logic explanation that seems to persuade most of my fellows here. The link is:
    http://hi.baidu.com/spacetimer/blog/item/39ae90dd89f432315882dd27.html

    spacetimer, June 9, 2008 at 5:18 am
  86. Actually, It kinda makes some sense. You see, they say that the left brain makes you think logically bla bla etc. So, only when focusing on the image, you can see it turn anti clockwise. but, if you look at it without focusing, like fidgeting around, it just turns clockwise.

    Kenny, June 10, 2008 at 10:27 am
  87. Am I the only one that thinks this dancer has a smokin body? Just keep spinning tiny dancer, keep spinning.

    Cy Bruskin, June 12, 2008 at 11:03 am
  88. I think that the brain dominance thing is a hoax. when you look at the knee of her fixed feet, it seems that the moving feet is just swaying not really rotating. then you could make her move to your desired direction

    Tim, June 13, 2008 at 7:34 am
  89. if you use your mouse wheel and move the dancer out of view and then quickly bring it back into view the dancer will change direction

    bruce, June 20, 2008 at 2:20 am
  90. As a drummer it is important to have the left/right thing going on without thinking about it. Personally I found it quite easy to see the rotation in either direction with the ability to also perform half turns then have the direction change (ie never actually perform a full turn). This gives full control and obviously the ability to quickly change from left to right and right to left sides of the brain in a split second.

    It’s one of the best brain exercises I’ve seen in a long time.

    Sure the animation is not perfect however there is also nothing wrong with only being able to see one direction – it’s simply a guide to which side of the brain is more dominant. Even I tend to see it clockwise if tired or get distracted.

    Darryl, June 20, 2008 at 12:30 pm
  91. I will agree with Darryl. As an artist/designer I am required to have control and upon first glance the dancer appeared counter clockwise however, the more dominant side of my personality saw her clockwise for a longer period of time.

    LED, June 21, 2008 at 8:51 am
  92. it clearly spins counter clockwise, but after focusing on the head just before the gif image rotates 360 deg you’ll see her spinning clockwise. but i only see this clockwise spin for 1-2 secs. then as the gif restarts rotating again the only spin i see is counter clockwise. you may try focusing on the leg first then on the head to see the 2 spins

    Batanes, June 23, 2008 at 7:34 pm
  93. accepting the view as is the image is clearly spinning counter-clockwise to me, but I can view it going clockwise too if I concentrate. And make it “switch” back and forth. I can do the same thing with a ceiling fan. Sceptism input from other people I showed this to however points to a “clever programmer” who’s randomly programmed the image to actually change directions in a way too subtle for the eye to detect. And guess what? The sceptics in question are left-brain ruled.

    Mary Ann Pederson, June 27, 2008 at 12:13 pm
  94. I was tested as a kid and found to be left brained. When I looked at the dancer it was spinning anti-clockwise and no matter how I looked at it, it would not change direction. But once I started to read the list she suddendly changed to clockwise. I then got it to switch every time by using my peripheral vision. I now firmly believe this is an S.E.P. (Somebody Else’s Problem). I also feel sick from staring at it for too long.

    Diederick Cronje, June 30, 2008 at 12:13 pm
  95. Intriguing quesion,

    I received the link http://www.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/story/0,22049,22535838-5012895,00.html
    At first I only saw her turn counterclockwise and as a nonbeliever started to google critically for other reviews.
    I found the website http://scienceline.org/2007/10/29/ask-hsu-spinning-girl-right-left-brain-hemispheres/
    As a nonbeliever I had to agree with reaction 25, who only perceived counterclockwise rotation.
    Reaction 31 suggests a clue, but I don’t get it.

    Reaction 24 gives a useful link which learned me the trick to see her turn both way’s!
    http://anuragworld.googlepages.com/mysteryofthespinningdancer. It turned me into a believer!!

    But there’s more:
    In both cases the heel of only one foot touches the ground periodically:
    When she’s turning clockwise it is her left foot.
    When she’s turning counterclockwise it is her right foot.
    At that moment:
    When she’s turning clockwise- her toes point away from us.
    When she’s turning clockwise her toes point towards us.

    Here it comes:
    When she’s turning counterclockwise you can see the underneath the foot she’s standing on. She tends to fall backwards.
    When she’s turning clockwise you cannot see the underneath the foot. (almost you can).

    Wheather she’s an animation or a flat projection of a real dance, it must be a matter of perspective.
    I tend to believe the leg she’s spinning on should be oriented vertically.
    Seen from aside, her foot makes an angle of about 15 degrees with the floor.
    As we can see onto the top of her head the spectators eye must be at least 1m60 above the floor.
    This means that -based on clockwise motion- the camera must be about 6m away of the point where the heel touches the

    ground. Assuming we confuse the orientation of the toes, and a horizontal space of 30cm between heel and toes, it is now

    possible to estimate the angle her foot makes with the floor for the counterclockwise motion.

    This is 43 degrees! Not even after years of molestration a dancers foot can do that.
    I apologize for the rigid approach while it really doesn´t matter (the boobs are great!).

    If I would have to choose what the “right” direction is,
    my answer would be :clockwise (in contrast to my initial impression)

    Paulussoort, July 5, 2008 at 7:09 am
  96. Try this.
    Look at the dancer upside down!
    I suspect this is re-affirming the argument of right brain or left brain dominance.
    I assume…the brain is still seeing the direction of spin as it was seeing it when the image was upright.

    WARNING! A computer monitor is heavy and it does get hard to hold and be sure to check that ALL your computer leads are long enough.

    :)

    Monsta Josh, July 12, 2008 at 9:14 pm
  97. Bull shit.

    The image has perspective ( not orthogonal projection ).

    The person who thinks it is turning counter-clockwise, their brain or eyes have defects.

    When I took off my glasses, I could see counter-clockwise. But as long as I notice the perspective, it is spinning clockwise.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perspective_(graphical)

    Anno, July 15, 2008 at 4:17 am
  98. Ut oh. What does it mean if you don’t see the dancer spinning at all? Does it mean I don’t use my brain at all????

    Oh noooooo

    Guess I better go stare at it some more instead of working. lol

    Don H, July 16, 2008 at 2:43 pm
  99. All that being said, I do beleive personally that the right brain – left brain beleif is valid as I see myself, graphic design student, could never do math, and not only that its that whenever I try i feel some sort of disconnect and frusration. I listen with my left here and am seen as an emotion person.

    Its just freekishly wierd how all the left brain vs. right brain criteria match up, so i beleive.

    One thing that happend that just freeked me out!!!
    I was watching the dancer going clockwise for a number of minutes, couldnt get it to go counter..

    I watched it through my left eye [left eye gos to right brain and vice versa] I proceeded to close my left eye and then watched it go counter clockwise through my right eye!!

    Excuse the exitement but this just happend and it freeked me out!!!

    Wade, July 18, 2008 at 8:41 pm
  100. Also one thing I found interesting is that when I was reading an essat, very insightfull I found that I was leading with my right eye, maybe partially due that we write from left to right but mainly due to the left part of my brain trying to decode logical Ideas, you can feel your right side reading..wohever wierd that sounds.

    Also I create music at home, I have also noticed then when I listen criticly to my songs I tilt my head so my left hear gets focus and this was before I know og that fact..

    This topic just got me so exited!

    Wade, July 18, 2008 at 8:46 pm
  101. Apologies I just realised the dancer I saw was a fake. Lol. It literally does turn the other way.

    Wade, July 18, 2008 at 8:50 pm
  102. “Stare at her long enough and a magical pole appears.”

    On some machines it will, but if not, just press the alt and shift keys both down at the same time, just as her left foot is pointing the furthest down it goes. It will then switch to pole dance mode. Cute!

    Maynard5, July 21, 2008 at 11:15 am
  103. I saw this and (despite lack of sleep) I could only see her going clockwise and even asked my dad which way he saw…he said Clockwise as well..As I stared long enough she switched to going counterclockwise but it was never a fullturn before it switched back to clockwise. I was only able to do it once though no matter how much I looked away and only stared at it through the side of my eyes. Trying to make it change directions started giving me a headache though so I was forced to believe that it will only go one way for me..Poor me or lucky me?

    Misty, August 20, 2008 at 9:17 am
  104. leaving aside the left/right debate how does it work? I imagine that there are two sequences, one clockwise the other counter-clockwise and appearing on alternate frames. Running like two majic lanterns, one inside the other. But at any one moment either the left side or the right side is dominant. I tried to photograph it but only one image appeared.

    jeremiah, August 20, 2008 at 1:34 pm
  105. Did anyone else get her to do a dance? It was very intriguing; I could make her do a 5 second dance routine. Each routine appeared to have a variation to it. My mind seemed to rapidly change her spinning direction, causing this fascinating movement pattern, and somewhat at my own will. I was already aware of my ability to switch my cognitive perspective, but this strengthens that belief drastically. This gets me interested in taking a more valid, clinical IQ test. If anyone was capable of doing this I’d be interested to know.
    Email me if you’d like, if this fascinated you as much it did me.
    TheParadigm8Exitence@gmail.com

    8Paradigm8Existence8, September 17, 2008 at 4:26 am
  106. This comment is directed at Anno.
    I find it somewhat laughable that you perceive Wikipedia to be authoritative, and by posting a Wikipedia web page it somehow makes your argument valid.

    8Paradigm8Existence8, September 17, 2008 at 4:35 am
  107. It seems like pride is getting in the way of some peoples judgment. The people dismissing this as absurd, merely because of their inability to make the spinning lady turn in both directions, does not make this false or you unintelligent.(Although based on the logical approach these people I speak of it appears to be debatable, only because you dismiss this for that particular reason.)
    A few weeks ago I was listening to the online MIT lecture on intelligence in the introduction to psychology course. (I would suggest listening to that if your interested in these kinds of things)
    The professor talked about people over estimating their abilities, and how people that are depressed frequently do not have these tendencies. Assuming that you are not depressed, this seems to be the case.

    8Paradigm8Existence8, September 17, 2008 at 5:06 am
  108. I found that if I blink my eyes while quickly turning my head and watching her, that I can make her seem to turn in one direction or the other..

    Alex, September 18, 2008 at 6:01 pm
  109. If there is a Yale study behind all this right brain left brain test: Does anyone have the original reference quoted someplace and if so, would he or she be willing to share it? To be able to read the original research may help the discussion.

    Thank you,
    Margarete

    Imhof, September 20, 2008 at 6:10 pm
  110. I’m a computer animator and will tell you that the spinning dancer ONLY spins clockwise.
    What a silly “test” Try this one:
    http://www.wherecreativitygoestoschool.com/vancouver/left_right/rb_test.htm

    beth, October 15, 2008 at 5:09 pm
  111. Well about this spinning dancer test,its funny because i could see the dancer spinning clockwise or anticlockwise,whenever i wanted without any effort.
    What this could mean?

    aisha, October 16, 2008 at 4:37 pm
  112. Damn she’s hot for an illusion!! If your right handed she spins on her right foot…

    Gordo, October 21, 2008 at 5:42 am
  113. I can get it to reverse, but I get nauseous afterwards.

    anoy, October 26, 2008 at 5:54 pm
  114. I CAN’T THANK YOU ENOUGH – THIS ARTICLE HAS CHANGED MY LIFE. I URGE ALL HUMAN BEINGS TO USE THIS VALUABLE INFORMATION AS A LEARNING TOOL IN TEACHING THEMSELVES TO USE BOTH SIDES OF THEIR BRAIN & TRANSFORM THEIR LIFE IN SO MANY NEW WAYS.
    IN THE LAST 6 MONTHS I HAVE READ EVERYTHING I COULD ON BOTH SIDES OF THE BRAIN. OUR LEFT SIDE IS OUR INTELLECT, BLACK & WHITE & CRITICAL & THE RIGHT IS OUR EMOTIONS & CREATIVITY & COLOUR – AS WELL AS MANY MORE FUNCTIONS NOT ON YOUR LIST. OUR THOUGHTS & OUR FEELINGS ARE WHAT MAKES US THINK & BEHAVE THE WAY WE DO. IT TOOK ME A FEW MONTHS TO MASTER IT, BUT I CAN NOW SWITCH MY BRAIN FROM EITHER SIDE & NOW SEE & FEEL MANY THINGS SO DIFFERENTLY. e.g I AM LEFT BRAINED & IF I AM BEING CRITICAL OR YELLING AT THE KIDS I CAN STOP MYSELF & SWITCH TO MY RIGHT SIDE & I THINK, SPEAK & FEEL IN A WHOLE NEW POSITVE WAY. USING BOTH SIDES OF THE BRAIN OPENS YOUR MIND UP TO A WHOLE NEW WORLD IN SO MANY DIFFERENT WAYS.
    AT 43 YRS OLD I OFTEN THOUGHT I MAY HAVE HAD ADHD ALL MY LIFE DUE TO MY MOOD SWINGS, LACK OF CONCENTRATION & CONTROLLING BEHAVOUR. WHEN I AM THINKING WITH MY RIGHT BRAIN I DON’T HAVE ANY OF THAT, I AM TOO BUSY BEING CALM, HAPPY, CREATIVE, ARTISTIC, MUSICAL & SO MUCH MORE. THIS MAY BE WHAT IS WRONG WITH KIDS WITH ADHD – THEY SHOULD BE TAUGHT HOW TO USE BOTH SIDES. I URGE EVERYONE TO STUDY BOTH BRAIN FUCTIONS MORE. IT CAN BE PUT INTO PRACTISE BUT TAKES TIME, EFFORT & DETERMINATION.THE REWARDS ARE HUGE – IT IS THE GREATEST GIFT YOU COULD EVER GIVE TO YOURSELF.

    Earth Angel, November 1, 2008 at 6:16 pm
  115. I am doing a science fair project on right/left brain dominance and right/left handedness and found so much information on this dancer. I found at first [without having previously read anything about it] that she was spinning clockwise, but then a couple of minutes into it she switched directions. I showed it to my mom and sister and after a LOT of concentration, thought, and time my sister was able to get it to switch, but my mom thought we were both crazy because she could not get it to switch. For me, I know I am right handed, but I am a dancer myself and tend to be pretty artistic, which are both right-brained characteristics. However, I am also very good at math and spelling, which are left-brained characteristics. All of the brain dominance tests I have taken have usually been 51%-49% or somewhere around there, with the more dominant side switching everytime. It is weird because physically [right handed, usually use my right side of body but could do either if I tried] I should be left-brained, but emotionally and dancing-wise I should be right-brained. I have found it interesting because at school last year I decided that it would be cool if I could write with my left hand, and although it hasn’t been a breeze, it has been fairly easy to teach myself to write with my left hand. Although it is much slower to write with my left hand, the neatness of it has improved significantly and unsually easy over the past couple of months. I wonder if you can be equally-brained?
    I usually see the dancer going clockwise, but can get it to switch when I concentrate enough. However, when it goes counter-clockwise, it seems to be jerkier whereas when she spins clockwise it is very smooth. I also find it strange that her bent arm switches sides? I understand how our brain “fills in lines” for the legs and that determines which way she spins, but how does our brain determine the arms when they are no where near each other? Overall I think this is very interesting and I may include this in my testing.

    Stephanie, November 2, 2008 at 9:15 pm
  116. I thought it was interesting too. It first went counter clockwise for me and then switch over. I was wondering what was going on. It’s pretty cool to observe though.

    Jana, November 4, 2008 at 5:57 pm
  117. staring at the shadow of here foot made it switch from Clockwise to counter-clockwise I can switch it whenever I want when I look at her body it’s stuck at clockwise but if i look down at all at the shadow it goes counter and then i can usually look back up at her and it’s still going counter but then switches back to clockwise

    Taylor, November 9, 2008 at 5:18 am
  118. It Was Fun!

    Sahand Elmi, November 10, 2008 at 9:32 am
  119. As I am a PhD student in psychology this test doesn’t exactly determine right or left brain. One fact about the left and right brain theory is it is only statistical not concrete. In simple terms the brain is able to switch abilities to different parts. What most people are describing is lateralization meaning the left side is responsible for so and so and right side is responsible for another ability. That is not exactly factual but theoretical. Interesting optical illusion but it doesn’t determine everyone’s dominate side.

    Panzhexin, November 12, 2008 at 4:52 pm
  120. I can make it change directions by blinking when it is in a certain position. I agree with the article. It has little to do with the right/left brained debate. It works the same as optical illusions do by where your focus is aimed.

    Devon, December 4, 2008 at 12:02 am
  121. Here’s the science behind it….

    Your view is hooked up to the left and right side of your brain in the following way: Whatever is “out of focus” to the right is sent to the left side of your brain. Whatever is out of focus to the left, is sent to the right side of your brain.

    Now, do this: move the image of the spinning girl to the center of your screen, then focus on the left hand side of your screen (not on the girl). Watch what happens to her out of view. Then move your focus to the other side of the screen again leaving her out of focus. On the one side, she will turn in one direction and on the other side the other direction.

    So why does this determine the dominant side of your brain? Do this test: focus on a wall in front of you. Then raise your finger into view between you and the wall. Do not focus on your finger, focus on the wall. Then close only one eye. Then close only the other eye. One eye will cause the finger to move. This is because one side of your brain is more dominant than the other and hence plays a larger role in your vision. If you are a left-brain person, the finger will be in your right side by default and the other way around.

    In the same manner, the spinning girl will either be in the left side of your view, or in your right, and hence (referring back to the first experiment of looking to the left and the right of the girl) the side in which she is by default is likely to determine which direction she is moving in.

    Thus, the dominant side of your brain determines which side she will most likely be turning to.

    Morne Lategan, December 9, 2008 at 10:08 pm
  122. I say enough of watching the dancer. Lets get back to work and then chip in to get Earth Angel a newer computer than that clunky old Apple ][ that only writes in ALL CAPS.

    Kurt Prochnow, December 11, 2008 at 12:17 pm
  123. Rebuttal to Morne Lategan:

    Dominant brain sides is only a theory and is statistical not concrete. As I study psychology at PhD level and biology there really is no one dominant side in all cases. Read the theory of Lateralization, read about the neural pathways, mathematicians who see the dancer spin in the other direction, and read about neuroplasticity. The dancing girl is only an optical illusion. The brain is only putting in the missing lines and that is all. Go to the link in suggestion 16 gives and you will see how it is an optical illusion. Brain dominant side is only a theory and not concrete. Do your own research. What you suggested was only how your optic nerve works on focusing.

    Panzhexin, December 16, 2008 at 7:25 pm
  124. Panzhexin, dont use the word theory so causually. You should know, at PhD level, that it means something else in science.

    Finally a post that speaks the truth. I hate all those left vs right websites.

    Such a mis guided notion, all pedalling it as true.

    Peter, January 15, 2009 at 1:13 pm
  125. You are right Peter about how the word theory is seen differently at different levels. But most people believe in folklore, urban legends, and gossip. The spinning girl is nothing more than an optical illusion. It’s hard to get people to understand that the spinning girl has nothing to do with brain dominance. Comment 16 provides a link to show how the brain just puts in lines.

    If some people read about lateralization or neuroplasticity they would understand. But many people have small minds and believe everything they hear on the net.

    As I had to study biopsychology it revealed to me that the brain is more amazing and complex than just a left and right side thing. All the neuro pathways still are not fully understood.

    Panzhexin, January 17, 2009 at 12:56 am
  126. Hmm, I can change her direction on demand. It doesn’t matter where I look, I just move my hand slightly the way I want her to spin, and she does.
    Btw, look here ( http://ofb.net/~whuang/imgs/spin/ ) and it shows a glitch which proves that she is indeed going counterclockwise. You just can’t see it because she’s moving too fast.

    Camille, February 4, 2009 at 7:58 pm
  127. Spent about an hour on this page reading through all the comments and checking out the various links. I must say… very cool and interesting stuff! The great thing about this world and life in general is that you never really know what is going on when you know at the BIG picture.

    Matek, February 10, 2009 at 1:29 pm
  128. I first looked at it and it spin clockwise. Then reading what others are seeing, I wanted to see the same.
    So I looked at it again!! this time, when I looked at it I use my Pheriphal vision, which means, I did not look at it but at the corner of my eye, that is when I see her spinning the “other way”- so when I look at it in focus she is counter-clockwise, and when I use my pheriphal vision – I saw her anti_clock-wise. Go figure!.
    Seeing her anticlockwise – the trick is to not focus on her, just focus on something outside of the video. and there u have it.

    mala, March 22, 2009 at 11:27 am
  129. okay so when you watch the dancer, you either see her spinning clockwise or counter clockwise. If you want to see her the other direction do this:
    if you are seeing her clockwise, her right leg should be out. if you are seeing her counter clockwise, her left leg should be out. So whatever way you see her, wait until her leg is pointing directly to the side. and if it is the leg in front, picture it as the leg in back right as it is facing the side. this should make your brain think the other leg is out, and she will switch directions. it may take a few tries. but be looking at her hip/upper leg area when you are trying to switch.
    my brain switches her direction every few minutes. i think im right brained because she moves clockwise when i look at first, but i can switch her whenever.

    stephanie, April 30, 2009 at 3:05 am
  130. I have a question I hope someone can answer.

    Clockwise = right side/creative, etc.

    Anti-clockwise = left side/logic, etc.

    I am majorly right sided, and after a lot of work got her to spin the other way, the logic, left-brained way. Once I did that, I stopped and walked away.

    Here’s my question, can we put ourselves in a more left-brained, or right-brained, oriented state by seeing focusing on a particular direction (say, I chose anti-clockwise and focus on seeing her the left-brained way)?

    Once I see her the left-brained way, and don’t flip her back to the right-brained way, will I be more keyed in to m left-brained faculties? Will I be thinking in a more left-brained way, if I focus on her going anti-clockwise, achieve seeing her that way, and then go off to do my math homework?

    thanks.

    Henry, May 22, 2009 at 11:34 pm
  131. WOah… that is so interesting! At first I could only see it going clockwise and thought for sure “this is rigged”

    As a matter of fact, I got quite frustrated with it until I tilted my head to the left (I normally always tilt my head to the right when I think…like a dog) and, just for a moment, I saw it change!!! weird. I really wonder if it works.

    I cant get it to spin anti clock for more than 2 or 3 turns…and when it changes back I cant fathom how it changed…

    but the right brain description does match me better… o well. thanks for the interesting article :)

    McKenna Carpenter, May 31, 2009 at 6:06 pm
  132. trick.
    covers the upper with your hand and close the eyes 2 seconds.
    open yours eyes and you see the legs rotating in clockwise,
    after you remove your hand the whole body dancer arm will rotate in that sense.

    tibipop, July 29, 2009 at 5:31 pm
  133. initially when I look it goes clockwise then it starts to flip from right to left and doesnt turn around at all. She just flips like a page being turned back and forward! its very mesmerising.
    I think looking at the shadow and the foot raising and lowering helps to make it flip like this.
    I love optical illusions!! :O)

    Clare, July 29, 2009 at 5:38 pm
  134. after awhile i was able to control it on a dime-it may just be an optical illusion, but it may have something to it because i’m a lefty and each time, when i click on it, it initally always looks like its going clockwise

    Julia, August 9, 2009 at 12:14 am
  135. I believe the dancer to be a complete fraud.

    To test my theory, I left the window open and simply randomly looked up every few minutes, while doing nothing else.

    One time she was going left. One time she was going right.

    And then, to make it easier for me to prove my theory, my internet connection suddenly slowed down and I was privy to witness the image actually BOUNCE as it changed directions.

    So, everyone…sorry to tell you, but this is simple a flash image that is programmed to change randomly.

    It’s not real.

    amy, August 21, 2009 at 1:32 pm
  136. She is obviously spinning clockwise!!

    Josh Quinn, September 11, 2009 at 10:02 am
  137. I can see double.it turns when i close and open my eyes.It’s amazing.

    Jessica Yang, September 12, 2009 at 12:33 am
  138. when i blink my eyes, it will change direction..lol. i have done test that says that i use my left and right brain equally..

    keith, October 22, 2009 at 2:44 am
  139. Contrary to what some think, she is not programmed to switch directions. It’s just an optical illusion. That’s like saying the black and white illusion where you can either see 2 black silouettes facing each other or a white vase in the negative space between the faces is programmed to switch from face to vase.

    How do I know, because by concentrating on and visualizing what leg she is using as her axis, left then right then left then right and so on…I can make her appear to never fully spin around. She just swings her leg and arm out in front of her 180 degrees from the left side to the right then back again. I can make her spin all the way around in either direction if I choose to as well but that’s kind of boring. It’s more fun to play with it. I know it doesn’t say much about left brain v. right brain, but it’s a fun mental challenge to master the control of her spinning direction.

    MFinelli, November 22, 2009 at 11:00 pm
  140. Hey i can get her spinning different ways each time her arm(that is reached out), comes passed infront of her. Also i printed off the picture and seen that it doesnt move on paper. It gave me a thought that maybe it is indeed whether you use your left on right side to visualise it, just as if any one is left handed or right handed. A standard picture but the brain sees it in whatever way/angle it is functioning in.

    Amanda, December 27, 2009 at 5:13 am
  141. Is there a similar exercise showing a dancing man rather than a naked lady? I want to show it to some very conservative people who will find the lady offensive Thank you

    Lois, January 12, 2010 at 2:49 am
  142. I agree with Beth, I am convinced that it only spins clockwise. If you stare at it long enough you can begin to trick your visual-spatial perception though. I work for a brain fitness company (HAPPYneuron – http://www.happy-neuron.com) and we have a few different visual-spatial games that really work the brain. If Beth is right and it is truly spinning clockwise (which is what I see) then what does that say about the people that are tricked into seeing the image go in reverse (my left-brained friends)?

    Mike, January 13, 2010 at 9:07 pm
  143. I don’t know about testing my left or right brain, but all I know that she was hot.

    Davidson, March 6, 2010 at 4:00 am
  144. wow, this thing has been going on for a long time.

    I first got this in an email a couple months ago and thought it was pretty neat.

    Though I knew that there was no way that it could accurately determine the level of my I.Q., it sure made me smile at the veeeeeeeeeeerrrrrrrrry slim possibility..

    I can watch her spin, and can make her change directions at will. The best way to do it is to focus on the 3 O’clock and 9 O’clock positions.

    Darrell, April 14, 2010 at 7:12 pm
  145. hahahaa.whats the most amazing is, that website is clocking up traffic by lying and no people notice it. its the picture itself that switch direction. not your brain. oh please.

    tis, June 9, 2010 at 7:58 pm
  146. super weird! at first she was just spinning clockwise, but i was able to get her to switch. but after that oddly enough i started using my left hand without realizing! is this because i’m attempting to access the other side of my brain?

    kitten, July 4, 2010 at 9:04 am
  147. the lady does change clockwise to unti clockwise, purposefully

    bmac, August 19, 2010 at 3:27 am
  148. What about if it doesn’t spin at all for me while somebody beside me looking at the same screen sees that it is spinning? Am I brain dead???????????? My IQ is quite low somewhere between 69 and 75. heheheheh, I am serious.

    enrico, September 27, 2010 at 11:05 pm
  149. This test is crap,what about the person which can turn it both ways at his will.This test tells me that neither i am right brained nor left brained because i can turn it both ways so does that mean that i don’t use my brain?

    aasdf, October 16, 2010 at 12:37 pm
  150. I can see it going back and forth clock and counter fairly easily. Pretty neat stuff.

    Zach, October 17, 2010 at 11:11 pm
  151. That was the best advise… looking away from the screen, not directly. When I looked away from the screen and just saw it with my peripheral vision, the dancer turned counter clockwise. Then I stared at the screen and after a few seconds, the dancer started turning clockwise. I didn’t have control where I could make her turn either way. I had to look away first.

    Neni, November 13, 2010 at 9:35 am
  152. I get a kick out of pseudo-intellectuals like Panzhexin. You’re at the PHD level we get it. Congratulations. That doesn’t necessarily make your IQ any higher than anyone else here. Besides, this illusion is supposed to be fun, get over yourself. Your like one of those guys who always brag about the size of their obviously small penis.

    Vinny, November 19, 2010 at 3:59 pm
  153. I can switch direction by doing a math equation in my head, while looking at her. Then if I just think how her shape looks, she goes the other direction.

    Hay just my 2¢

    Mike, November 25, 2010 at 12:20 am
  154. If you see it spinning clockwise close your right for at least two minutes while you stare at it and you will eventually see her spinning in the opposite direction.

    AntwanFisha, December 16, 2010 at 6:04 pm
  155. Or say shnippity shnoppity bibbity boppity over and over and over and over again.

    AntwanFisha, December 16, 2010 at 6:32 pm
  156. Hello from Russia! Need to it be simple for me to pages and use a submit in your weblog with the link to you? I’ve tried emailing you relating to this issue however it seems i cant reach you, please response as soon as have a moment, thanks.

    free tattoo stencils, January 9, 2011 at 10:01 pm
  157. If I read the words ‘PhD in psychology’ again, I’m actually going to break this laptop’s screen.

    LP, January 24, 2011 at 9:39 am
  158. You people are amazing me! I didn’t TRY anything. I just simply looked at her without even know what it was about. My mom told me to watch her and I had no idea what the meaning was behind it and no further explanation was given at until after I looked at her. As I watched her, she was constantly changing directions. Then, I was told what it was about and that not everyone saw her change directions that way. Mom had to “make” her change directions. With me, she just did, over and over. What does that mean?

    Stacie Hubers Hudnell, April 3, 2011 at 10:55 am
  159. My mom, my son and I all three watched it at the same time after my first time watching it. When we all three watched at the same time, we all three saw different things. Mom had to make her change by reading words above the screen. Kameron and I kept seeing it change involuntarily, but at different times and in different directions. Very interesting.

    Stacie Hubers Hudnell, April 3, 2011 at 11:00 am
  160. Um… to be honest , i am flabbergasted by the article . Being a programmer , now i look forward to make a game on this!

    flash games, July 20, 2011 at 9:19 am
  161. I can change the direction of the movement by just using the energy of my brain,what i mean is that i move my right hand so that my left brain will work and move my left hand so that my right brain will work too and i also image the ballerina and think of it as words too,i can change that in a second its so cool,,..but i dont know what this talent of mine meant to do with me.

    edward, August 6, 2011 at 8:55 pm
  162. Hmmm even in the hack that jenifer moser gave I can still control them all how is that?

    Christine, August 29, 2011 at 10:23 pm
  163. rather if any of you want to beleive me what does it mean when you can control which way she spins like this i can get her to go left right left right as many times i want it takes a sec but after i can get her to spin however i want its weird kinda freaks me out i just want to know what it means

    kyle, August 30, 2011 at 12:35 am
  164. write me back please

    kyle, August 30, 2011 at 12:36 am
  165. Hello from the Netherlands, I also can see her spinning both ways.

    Tessa, March 9, 2012 at 5:03 pm
  166. i dont know how but i can look at her leag thats vertical can make her move to either way i want to what does that mean i heard that there is people that can use the right and left part of their brain (golden brain) am i one of those people
    please someoen reply to my e-mail (rs.player@live.com)

    mike, July 27, 2012 at 6:15 am
  167. Everyone can see her spinning both ways if they really try but to most people seeing her spin one way is effortless and natural while making her spin the other way without her turning again takes some effort, this just shows which side of the brain u are using more at this moment, this can change because people change. Maybe a month from now or something u see her spin in the other direction because uve been using the other side of ur brain more.

    Lauty, August 8, 2012 at 1:40 pm
  168. Ι simply wаs going to prevent and thank you for аllоwing me to Үou may be at lеast
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    juego moto carreras, August 14, 2012 at 1:23 pm
  169. I can see her turn counter clockwise and clockwise at any time. What does that mean? I’ve even tried a legit test and I saw it both ways, it is possible,

    Itspeep, September 18, 2012 at 4:11 am
  170. I myself am left handed (13yo) and am trying to write with my right hand because it would be cool to be ambidextrous. Any tips would be appreciated. Just post a comment. Thanks

    Daniel, January 3, 2013 at 7:18 am
  171. Thanks Jennifer Now I See,

    Awesome

    At this website – http://ofb.net/~whuang/imgs/spin/ – there are modified versions of the dancer that help you see both directional views, together with the original. Take a look!
    I found that if I clicked ‘Hide’ for the picture with the direction I naturally saw (counterclockwise) and stared at the other two, I could make myself see the original dancer turn clockwise. Now whenever I see the original dancer, she flips back and forth randomly.
    Jennifer Moser, November 2, 2007 at 7:25 am

    Heri P, February 3, 2013 at 11:41 am
  172. hi, I can spin her from side to side not just around either way….

    alis, April 23, 2013 at 6:00 am
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