Essential stretches for wrist and elbow pain.

This is a repeat post from our old blog. It has some very useful information so we thought it was worth re-posting. Enjoy!

 

June 2013…

I was recently asked by a patient to provide him with some stretches and exercises for his forearms. I thought it would be useful information for all patients and a good topic for the blog.

Marc is a musician who plays percussion and piano. Both of these instruments have the potential to put a lot of stress on the wrist and forearm regions. Forearm and wrist tightness is not limited exclusively to musos…. Anyone doing repetitive work with their wrists and hands will benefit from the following series of exercises. The most common cause these days of problems in this region is repetitive use of the keyboard and mouse.

In addition to the stretches listed below, it would also be recommended that you look at the postural stretches outlined in our post on posture.

 

Forearm flexor stretch

forearm_flex_stretch

This stretch targets the palmar surfaces of the wrist and hand and front of the forearm

Hold your arm out in front of your body with a straight elbow and palm facing up.

Using your other hand, pull your fingers back toward your body until you feel the stretch in your forearm and wrist.

Hold 15-20 seconds and repeat both sides x 2

 

Forearm extensor stretch

forearm_ext_stretch

This stretch is for the top of wrist and back of forearm

Hold your arm out in front of your body with a straight elbow and palm facing down, wrist bent and fingers pointing towards the floor.

Using your other hand, pull your fingers toward your body until you feel the stretch in your forearm.

Hold 15-20 seconds and repeat both sides x 2.

 

Prayer stretch

prayer_stretch

A great stretch for the palmar surfaces of the wrist and hand and front of the forearm

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart to begin the stretch.

Place your palms and fingers together with your fingers pointing toward your neck.

Gently push your hands together while lowering them away from your body until your wrists separate and you feel a mild stretch in your forearms.
Hold 15-20 seconds.

 

Wrist circles

wrist_circles

A great exercise to loosen the wrist joints and forearm tendons

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and form the letter T with your body. Extend your arms straight out to your side at shoulder height. Keep your arms parallel to the floor, elbows straight, palms facing down and your fingers together. By rotating only your wrists, move your hands forward, up, to the back, down and forward to complete a circle.

Repeat 10 circles, rest and do another set in the opposite direction.

Here is a nice article from The Strad with some more detailed information on stretching for musicians…