The sign for "ready" has a few versions. They are all
The main version of "ready" holds the "R"-hands in front of the body
(you can overlap them or just have them close to each other) and
then moves them outward (to the sides) about 12 centimeters each.
Note: I get the feeling that at some point in the past this sign may have
been an "initialized" version of the sign for FINISH but has mutated to the
point where it now has a movement somewhat similar to that of a baseball
umpire signaling "Safe!"
Another version of "ready" uses a movement similar to one of the versions of
the sign "PLAN / prepare." The "R" hands are both held in front of the
torso, off to one side a bit and then both are moved to the other side of
the torso using a somewhat quick, definite movement.
READY (conveying the meaning of "We are prepared.")
"Is everybody ready?!"
If you are with a group preparing to "head out" to go somewhere and you want
to ask if everyone is prepared to leave you can hold both "R" hands up above
your shoulders and shake them back and forth while raising your eyebrows and
looking at people.
READY: "Is everybody ready?!"
A student writes: "I have a question for the sign "READY". Can I
use one hand to sign the word, or is it required to to use both
In considering how to sign READY we need to recognize that we
are really discussing a few different inflections of the sign:
READY when expressing in context the question of "Are you
ready?" -- can be done either one or two handed. When talking to
a large group or situations that are more formal you would tend
to use two hands. If driving or holding a cup of coffee in a
casual setting you would tend to use one hand.
READY when expressing the concept of "I am ready," "We are
ready" or "You'll be ready when?" -- is typically
done with two hands and would normally only be done with one
hand if you are holding something in the other hand. This
is probably at least partially due to the existence of a
competing sign: RIGHT-[direction]-[opposite-of-left] which uses
a sweep movement of a single "R"-hand.
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