By Sarah Kuindersma, M.A.T Muscle Activation Techniques, PTS,
Our hands are in high demand and often taken for granted. We type, we text, we lift, and grip throughout the day, without taking a moment to appreciate the humble wrist. This humble wrist makes most of our day-to-day activities possible. It is important that we make sure that our wrists and elbows have adequate strength and mobility, similar to other parts of our bodies such as knees and shoulders. Without this strength and mobility we are vulnerable to stiff wrists or worse nagging pain with simple activities.
The wrist is an elaborate structure which allows for the broad range of movements it can perform. To avoid pain and recover quickly from a wrist injury, focus on developing strength in your wrists while maintaining excellent range of motion. How does one do this?
This is where we are here to help, below are a few exercises that can help improve wrist mobility, release tension quickly, and build grip strength to keep your wrists healthy and pain free.
Wrist Mobility Drills
The following is an easy 5 minute routine you can do at your desk for your wrist.
- Fist revs: visualize revving your motor bike. Have your elbows bent forearms parallel to the floor. Make a fist, and slowly pull the wrists up hold for a second before curling the wrists down. Perform 8-10 times
- Fist extension to finger extension: start in the same position, with your fists closed, pull the fists up hold while you extend the fingers up to the ceiling, hold for a second make a fist and return the start. Perform 8-10 times
- Wrist Flexion Pulls: Start in the same position, this time have your fingers straight, point your hand to the floor, from here curl your fingers into a fist. Use your opposite hand to gently pull. Hold for 2-3 seconds before releasing and repeating. Perform 4-5 reps/side
- Hammer Curls: Start in the same position, this time turn your wrists made into fists to face each other. Slowly pull the thumbs towards you then push them away. Perform 4-5 reps. After you can then curl the fists in towards each other and then away. Perform 4-5 reps.
- Open Palm Wrist Circles: hold onto one wrist, open your hand and start to make a full circle at the wrist. Perform 3-4 circles one way then rev direction and repeat.
- Prayer hands: Place your hands in the praying position, then slowly lower the hands pressed into each other. Hold the stretch for 2-3 seconds repeat 4 times then repeat with the hands flipped in a rev pray. This time you are slowly raising the wrists up to feel a stretch.
- Clench and release: squeeze your fist tight hold 2-3 seconds then shake the hands out. Repeat 4-5 times.
Watch these exercises for a visual reference:
*Disclaimer: Always consult with your doctor before starting any exercise program. If you experience any numbness, tingling or reproduction of your symptoms, please contact your doctor or physiotherapist .
Median Nerve Floss
If you are experiencing numbness down the hand, it could be due to pressure on the median nerve, usually due to repetitive usage of the wrist.
The following exercise is a nerve mobilization exercise to help decrease inflammation and pain by alleviating the pressure on the never. You can do this seated or standing.
- Bring one arm up like you are going to flex your bicep. Relax the bicep and turn the palm of your hand towards your ear.
- Imagine there is a string attached from your middle finger to the top of your ear. As you straighten your elbow your ear moves down to your shoulder.
- To start keep your hand in line with your wrist, to advance this exercise you can pull your fingers and palm back like your spiderman about to shoot a web.
Watch Median Nerve Floss : January 20, 2022 - YouTube
Relieving Wrist Pain with Muscle Activation Techniques
Wanting to alleviate wrist pain in a different way? Have you tried M.A.T. Muscle Activation Techniques?
M.A.T. assess your movement mechanics to identify potential faulty movement mechanics leading to chronic strain creating the pain. M.A.T. then activates the muscles or rather creates a repatterning of movement patterns so your wrist can better handle the force applied to it through everyday movements and exercises.
Call to book in with our in house M.A.T. Specialist Sarah Kuindersma today, at Active Sports Therapy 403-278-1405
Prefer to book online? Take advantage of our online booking system at www.activesportstherapy.ca.
Want to learn more about M. A. T. ? Watch this video