Our hands and wrists are crucial to all of us throughout the day, and when we have a problem with either one of them, this can cause issues. Today, we take an in-depth look on how you can strengthen your hands and wrists if you’re struggling with everyday activities.
Stretching & Exercise
This may seem simple and quite common, but there is a reason for that – it works like a treat! If you’re struggling to pick simple objects up with your hand or you feel your wrist is too weak to support the hand, then we definitely advise you to perform simple hand and wrist stretches. By beginning with stretches, your brain is telling your hand and wrist that you’re going to be stretching these muscles further till you reach your limit.
Once you have reached your limit stretching, you can then begin to start exercising the hand and wrist. But it’s important to know that you shouldn’t jump into the heavy impact exercises as this will only cause you an injury – which you do not need. Simply begin with the lighter weights so your hand and wrist will not feel overly stressed – the less pressure the better, especially on your wrist as this is supporting your hand.
When you exercise, we suggest you start from the bottom and work your way up. Exercise 2-3 times a week and gradually build-up, but only do this when you feel ready too and your doctor says you can. A great exercise to begin with is the ‘wrist curls’, and what’s great about this workout is you don’t need a heavyweight, you can use the lightest weight possible if need be.
Simply sit down on a bench so you’re comfortably, with the small weights in hand, place your arms on the top of your thighs so that your palms are facing upwards. Make sure your wrists are right at the edge of your knees and just let your hands down slightly, then squeeze them up and you have done one wrist curl – sounds simple right? It really is!
Once you slowly start getting better at a wrist curl you can gradually add more weight, but only do this when you feel confident enough to up-the weight and your wrist can take that extra weight. This is a great exercise to help you gain more strength in your wrist and we highly recommend everyone give it a go!
After suffering an injury to your hand or wrist, it can be difficult building the strength back up in these areas as there isn’t much you can do, however, we have a solution for you. Grip strengtheners are a great way to build your strength back-up in your hands and wrist, as it requires you to use a tool that creates measurable resistance for you to squeeze against.
Grip strengtheners are available in a variety of tensions, but we recommend you decide with your doctor which level you should go for, as starting at the toughest one is never a good idea. It’s always best to gradually increase tension as you will build your strength back-up quicker than you think!
Now you’re happy with the right tension for your grip strengthener, you need to use this equipment the correct way. We suggest that you sit comfortably on a bench or chair, and bend your arm so it is at a right angle – with your palm facing in and holding the grip in one hand.
Next, you need to squeeze slowly then release. Try your best to repeat this around 8-10 times for maximum effort, but remember that only your hand should be moving – not your arm. Once you have done this with one hand, do the same with the other and when you can complete multiple sets, then you should look to increase the tension of the grip.
Before you decide to increase the tension in your grip, make sure you feel ready, confident and confide in your doctor if need be. A second opinion is always valued, especially when it comes to regaining your health/strength back – there is nothing more important to feeling 100% right.
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Some people may find that they can recover their strength by themselves and not need any help, but not everyone is like this and has that mentality. It’s nothing to be ashamed of asking for help, as we all need it at some point in our lives, but it’s essential we have as much support as possible when recovering from an injury.
This is why physiotherapy is very popular after you have just recovered from an injury, as you can decide when is best to see the physio and they will come visit you at your home. They will conduct a full subjective assessment to gain a picture of your hand and wrist pain, and how you might’ve caused the injury in the first place.
Also, the physio will organise physical examinations to further test how your strength is in your hand or wrist. If it’s increasing then you’re doing great work, if not, they will discuss with you steps in which you could take to improve in another way. Throughout the sessions, you will experience a variety of treatment methods which are designed to see where you are at.
The treatment options will consist of deep tissue massage, stretching, trigger point release, soft tissue release plus much more. The physio will discuss with you at the start of the treatment which they would like you to try first and will make it their number one priority to ensure you regain your full strength as soon as possible.
We hope you enjoyed reading our latest blog on how you can strengthen your hands and wrists. If you have tried any of our suggestions, then get in touch and let us know how you got on.