3 Wrist Exercises for the Office

Wrist exercises can help prevent injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome. Over the course of time, your body adapts to sitting at a desk, typing away at a keyboard–and this can actually change the shape of your muscles and cause joint dysfunction and pain. Here are some easy wrist exercises you can do in the office to prevent carpal tunnel syndrome and other overuse injuries.

1) Forearm Stretch

This stretch works on the muscles of the forearm. To perform it, follow these steps:

  • Hold your arm out in front of you, with the palm facing down and parallel to the floor.
  • Raise your fingertips toward the ceiling, until your hand is perpendicular to your forearm.
  • With the other hand, gently grasp your fingertips.
  • Pull the fingertips gently back until you feel a stretch in the underside of your forearm.
  • Hold the stretch for 20-30 seconds while breathing deeply and slowly.
  • Repeat on the other arm.

You can stretch the top of your forearm in a similar manner:

  • Extend your arm with the palm facing down.  Rotate your forearm so that your inner elbow faces the ceiling.
  • Point the extended fingertips toward the floor.
  • Grasp the fingertips with your other hand and gently pull them toward your wrist until you feel a stretch in the upper part of your forearm.
  • Hold the stretch for 20-30 seconds while breathing deeply.
  • Repeat on the other arm.

2) Wrist Twirls

As you work, your wrists may get stiff. Stop occasionally to perform some wrist twirls.

  • Hold your hands out in front of you. You may fully extend your arms if you wish, or you may keep them bent.
  • Make fists with your hands, but don’t squeeze too tight; keep them loose.
  • Twirl your wrists slowly in one direction. Breath deeply and slowly. Try to coordinate the movement with your breath.
  • Complete 5-10 repetitions, then twirl your wrists in the other direction for 5-10 repetitions.

3) Pitch and Yaw

Pitch and yaw exercises move your wrists up and down and from side to side to keep the muscles in your wrists, hands and forearms supple and long. To perform the wrist pitch, follow these instructions:

  • Extend your arms in front of you. You may straighten them completely or keep them bent, if you prefer.
  • Make fists with your hands. As before, keep the fists loose and relaxed.
  • Slowly move your hands to the right until you feel a stretch in the left side of both wrists.
  • Hold the stretch, breathing deeply for 20-30 seconds.
  • Move your hands to the left until you feel a stretch in the right side of both wrists.
  • Hold the stretch for 20-30 seconds, breathing deeply.

 

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