As a yoga instructor, I know the importance of building strength and wrist stretch muscles that are used frequently in order to prevent injury.
As a business owner, I know how much time I spend on my computer, using my hands and working the muscles in my wrists and fingers.
You would think that since I teach this on a regular basis, I would practice this myself. But, I did not, at least up until a while ago, I didn’t. And, that is where the saying “yoga teachers are the worst students” comes into play.
Due to the lack of stretching my wrists and the amount of time I do spend writing/typing/working on my computer, I actually injured myself doing yoga a few months ago. It was quite embarrassing that I had injured my wrist and developed tendonitis in my thumb because I didn’t practice what I teach. Trust me when I say, you need your wrists and full function of them.
If you are like me and spend a lot of time on your computer or phone and this is something that is not looking to change any time soon, it’s time that you start adding these stretches into your daily routine. Even if you aren’t noticing any pain or tightness, these can and should be used as a preventative measure as well. They aren’t crazy or even time consuming, but they are beneficial to the health of your hands so that you can continue to work and hustle without hindrance.
#1: Clenching Fists
Start sitting down with your hands on your thighs, palms face up. Clench your fists. Start bending your wrists, drawing your closed fingers towards your body. Hold this for about 10-15 seconds and repeat 5 times. Exhale as you pull your fingers towards body and inhale and you return to starting position.
You should feel this in the backs of your wrists and even in the forearm. Start doing this at the beginning of your workday and end with it again after your workday.
Hold elbows tight to sides and shake wrists. This is an important wrist stretch.
#2: Clenching Fists adding Thumbs
Sitting at your desk, lay your arm down in a place where your forearm is stable and your hand is hanging over the edge. With your thumb up towards the ceiling and your pinky finger towards the floor, enclose your thumb inside your closed fist.
Keeping your hand in a fist with your thumb enclosed, begin to draw your fist toward the floor. You will feel a stretch down your thumb and up into your wrist. Hold for 10-15 seconds and repeat at least 5 times. Exhale your air as you shift your wrist down and inhale and you retreat wrist back to starting position.
Hold elbows tight to sides and shake wrists for a great wrist stretch.
#3: Table Top Stretch
Stand up at your desk and place your hands, palm face down, shoulder distance apart. Now, turn your hands around so that your fingers are facing your body and palms are still flat on your desk. Walk your feet back about 1 foot, give a slight bend in the knees and begin to shift your hips back and forth. While shifting your hips, be sure your palms stay flat and there is little to no bend in the elbow.
Exhale as you shift your hips back and inhale as you return to standing position. Hold with your hips shifted back for 10-15 seconds and repeat at least 5x.
Hold elbows tight to sides and shake wrists. This is the last important wrist stretch.
There are plenty of other wrist stretches as well as strengtheners but these three are my favorite and go-to stretches. Try them out and share them with your office mates!
I hope that you keep your wrists healthy so you can keep doing what you love.