Take a Short Break from Working at Home to Stretch Your Wrists - Virtua Health, NJ

Take a Short Break from Working at Home to Stretch Your Wrists

By Virtua Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Staff

Using a computer or other device all day can cause repetitive strain on the muscles, tendons and joints in your hand and cause them to swell. When performing repetitive activities, it’s important to take short, frequent breaks to stretch your hands and wrists.

Virtua’s physical therapists recommend these stretches to alleviate the pressure on your wrists.

High/low wrist stretch

  • Holding your arms at your sides, bend your arms to 90 degrees.
  • Start with your palms facing down.
  • Bend your wrists downwards and hold for five seconds.
  • Now, bend your wrists upward and hold for five seconds.
  • Repeat 10 times.

Wrist flexor stretch

  • Sit with your elbows on a table and press your palms together (it should look like you’re praying).
  • Keeping your palms together, slowly lower your wrists toward the table until you feel a stretch.
  • Hold for five seconds and then release.
  • Do two sets, repeating 10 times per set.

Wrist push-ups

  • With your arms resting comfortably in your lap, place one hand in the other.
  • Push your hand up with the other until you feel tension at the wrist.
  • Hold for five seconds and release.
  • Repeat 10 times.
  • Move to the other hand and repeat 10 times.

Wrist flexor stretch (variation)

  • Hold one arm out straight in front of you, and grasp your outstretched palm with your other hand.
  • Press back on your palm with the other hand until your fingers are pointed up, and you feel tension at the wrist.
  • Hold for five seconds and release.
  • Repeat 10 times.
  • Move to the other hand and repeat 10 times.
  • Do two sets.

Wrist extensor stretch

  • Hold one arm out straight in front of you, and grasp the top of your outstretched hand with your other hand.
  • Press down on the top of your hand with the other hand until your fingers are pointing down, and you feel tension at the wrist.
  • Hold for five seconds and release.
  • Repeat 10 times.
  • Move to the other hand and repeat 10 times.
  • Do two sets.

Wrist turns

  • Holding your arms at your sides, bend your arms to 90 degrees.
  • Start with your palms facing down.
  • Turn your palms face up and then turn your palms face down.
  • Do two sets, repeating 10 times per set.

These exercises are beneficial whether you work on a computer or device or with hand-held tools or assembly-line machinery. Do them once or twice a day for wrist relief, and keep up with it when you return to your office or workplace. 

Updated March 26, 2020

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