For acts such as washing the hands in the morning, before eating bread or mayim acharonim, the use of coach gavra (human force) is required.

Is it enough to utilize a single coach gavra for both hands or does each hand need its own coach gavra?

An application of this would arise when using the faucet - do you open (and close) the faucet 3 times (each opening for both hands) or 6 times (each opening for each hand).

  • See mishna yadayim 2. You can have someone pour over both hands at once
    – Double AA
    Jun 9, 2015 at 0:42
  • I think that is different, since one Reviis is enough in that case for multiple people.
    – HaLeiVi
    Jun 9, 2015 at 4:05
  • @HaLeiVi I don't know what you mean by "this". i was just addressing his question, even if the application is disputable.
    – Double AA
    Jun 9, 2015 at 16:53
  • 1
    @Mefaresh How in the world is that a duplicate??
    – Double AA
    Jun 9, 2015 at 17:40

1 Answer 1


It doesn't have to be a separate Koach Gavra. However, the example might not be a good one.

The Mechaber writes in the Shulchan Aruch:

סימן קנט

ט} חבית שיש בה מים מניחה על ברכיו ונוטל ממנה לידים ואם היתה מוטה בארץ והמים מקלחים ממנה או שעומדת והמים יוצאים דרך נקב שבה ונתן ידיו שם לא עלתה לו נטילה ואם היתה ברזא (פירוש דבר סותם הנקב, ספינ''ה בלע''ז) בנקב והסירה וקבל המים על ידיו חשיב שפיר כח גברא וצריך להחזירה ולהסירה בכל שפיכה ושפיכה

One may wash from a barrel of water. If it is on the ground and tilted and the water is flowing out or if the water is flowing out of a hole, that won't be a good Netila. If there is a faucet and he pulled it out, the water that falls on his hand is considered Koach Gavra [and is good for Netila], but you have to put it back and pull it out for each pour.

י} אם הטה חבית מלאה מים והלך וישב לו והחבית שופכת מים כל היום מחמת הטייתו ונטל ידיו ממנו עלתה לו נטילה

If you tilted a barrel full of water and left it this way, and water is spilling all day from your tilting of the barrel, it would be good for Netila. [The Mishna Brura adds that this would be good even if the one washing hadn't seen the one who tipped the barrel.]

The משנה ברורה explains the difference between these two:

סו} והלך וישב לו וכו' - ולא דמי למה שמבואר בס"ט דכח גברא נחשב רק הקילוח ראשון לבד ומטעם זה צריך להחזירה בכל שפיכה ושפיכה דהתם לא עשה מעשה בגוף המים ורק שהסיר הברזא המונע המים לצאת ולכן לא חשיב בא מכחו רק קילוח ראשון היוצא מיד כשפתוח אבל הכא שעשה מעשה בגוף המים שהניע אותם ומחמת הטיתו נשפכין כ"ז ששופכין מהחביות בקילוח לעולם חשיב בא מכחו

In the case of the faucet he didn't do something to the rest of the water, he only removed the stopper which held it back. Therefore, only the first splash is considered to have come from his force. But when he tilts the barrel, he is tilting the whole water. Hence, all the water that flows is flowing from his force.

What we see from the tipped barrel is that we don't need a separate Koach for each hand, nor for any amount of people. The only requirement is that the water falling should be coming by the force of man.

As for washing in the morning, you might not need Koach Gavra at all.

  • Isn't opening the faucet your act?
    – Ani Yodea
    Jun 9, 2015 at 14:32
  • @AniYodea, Sure. That is why the first splash that comes out is good for Netilas Yadayim. But the Mishna Berura is explaining that you didn't move the whole water. Therefore the water that follows, although it is only flowing thanks to you, is not pushed out by your force. On the other hand, when you tip the barrel your force moved all the water.
    – HaLeiVi
    Jun 9, 2015 at 15:27
  • maybe I wasn't clear. I meant to open and close the faucet to create a new coach gavra.
    – Ani Yodea
    Jun 9, 2015 at 16:40

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