Contrary to popular belief, you can use either method. There is a misguided assumption among countless learner drivers, parents and some instructors that the push-pull method should be used in the PDA, however this is not the case.
The official instruction in the “How to Pass Your Driving Assessment” booklet issue by the WA Department of Transport is:
“You do not have to use a special method of steering or using the gears but the method you use should help you operate the car safely.
- Steer with both hands unless you are operating the controls.
- Keep your hands on the outside of the steering wheel.
- Keep your hands in a position that allows you to adjust your steering if you need to do so.
- Do not completely cross your ARMS”.
NOTE: Crossing of ARMS refers to the situation where your elbows lock after half a turn if you try to turn the wheel with your hands locked in the “10 and 2” or “9 and 3” position – not the mere crossing of HANDS as per the hand-over-hand technique!
As a Joondalup Department of Transport Driving Assessor once advised me, “Push-pull steering is ‘old school’ “.
At ILUKA Driving School we demonstrate both methods and allow you to decide what’s right for you.
There are strong opinions about the merits of each steering method within the driver training industry, however we won’t engage in that debate here!
If you come to us with a preference of either push-pull or hand-over-hand, we won’t try to change you to another technique – provided that the execution of your chosen style is EFFICIENT and allows for quick changes of direction in low speed manoeuvres.