Wrist & Arm Pain

Hi, I'm Doctor Jo, a licensed Physical Therapist and Doctor of Physical Therapy. I hope you enjoy my video demos of stretches & exercises for common injuries and syndromes. If you have a question, just ask. Be safe. Have fun. And I hope you feel better soon.

Wrist & Hand Stretches for Gamers

Wrist and hand pain is common in gamers from using gaming controllers and/or hand held gaming devices like the Nintendo Switch or DS. This is the case with my buddy Ray from the YouTube channel Raymond Strazdas. He stopped by to get some wrist and hand stretches for gamers.

When gaming, you can have a lot of tightness in your fingers, thumbs, wrists, elbows and even your shoulders and back. Starting off with some wrist range of motion exercises will help loosen up the area. Wrist flexion and extension, as well as radial deviation and ulnar deviation will help relieve some pain. 

Wrist flexor and extensor stretches are a great way to get rid of wrist and elbow tightness. Since these muscles in tendons are in your hand, wrist, and attach at the elbow, it’s important to stretch the whole arm.

Then stretching the thumbs, fingers into flexion and extension, and the webbing between the fingers really help relieve tension when you have been using them for long periods.

A great way to strengthen the thumbs and fingers is to use a rubber band. It’s easy to find, and really helps strengthen the extensor muscles.

A chin tuck is not only a great stretch for your neck muscles, but it also helps reset the muscles to correct your posture.

A chest stretch will also help correct your posture and open up your chest to relieve tightness through the area. You can do this standing with your hands clasped behind your back, or you can stand in a corner and use the walls to help you stretch.

Related Videos:

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Stretches

De Quervain's Syndrome Stretches

Wrist Tendonitis Treatment for Pain Relief

Buy Wrist Tendonitis WorksheetWrist tendonitis, or tenosynovitis, is a general term referring to any tendon in your wrist area causing wrist pain. The swelling of a wrist tendon sheath causes irritation to the tendon. This can be De Quervain’s syndrome, a repetitive strain injury (RSI), or it can even be the wrist flexor or wrist extensor tendons that are irritated.

These stretches and exercises should help.

Start off with active range of motion to the wrist to help relieve the wrist pain. These movements are wrist flexion and extension, radial and ulnar deviation, and pronation and supination. These movements are continuous to warm up the muscles.

Wrist stretching is also very helpful in relieving wrist pain. Stretching the wrist flexor and extensors are very important.

Then opening and closing the hand as widely as you comfortably can will help glide the wrist tendons to improve motion.

To strengthen the wrist, you can use a ball, towel, or pool noodle for finger flexion, and a rubber band for finger extension.

Finally, using a small weight can help reset the muscles in the wrist, and strengthening the wrist muscles will help reduce pain. Using a soup or vegetable can is a great treatment for wrist tendonits.

Related Videos:

Hand Arthritis Stretches & Exercises

Hand, Wrist, & Neck Stretches & Exercises for Artists

Elbow Pain Relief, Featuring Nick from NoWayAsWay

Elbow pain often comes from repetitive movements and can come in many forms like tennis elbow, golfers elbow, or like my friend Nic, card thrower's elbow! Nick has a YouTube channel called NoWayAsWay, and he's a card thrower and does some pretty crazy card tricks. He often gets pain in his elbow and wrists. 

Here are some stretches and exercises to help with elbow and wrist pain.

Starting with stretching, put your arm straight out in front of you. With your palm down, bend your wrist down with overpressure from your other hand. If this is not enough of a stretch, curl your fingers into a fist and do the same stretch. Now with your palm down and making a fist, bend your wrist up with overpressure from your other hand. If this is not enough of a stretch, open up your fingers pointing them in the air and do the same stretch. Hold these for 30 seconds, and do three of them each way. You can alternate back and forth with these.

Now grab a hammer or something that is top heavy to give you an extra stretch with overpressure. You will do your supination and pronation now with the hammer. Do ten of these.

Next you will use a resistive band for some strengthening exercises. You can prop your arm on a table and let your wrist hand off or you can hold it up in the air. Make a fist with your hand with your palm down holding onto the band that is anchored at your foot. At your wrist, bend your wrist up to work the muscles in extension, and then bend it down to stretch the muscles in flexion. Then you will turn your hand over with your palm up. Slowly pull the band upward only moving your wrist, and then come back down. Now hold the resistive band in your hands with your thumbs inwards facing each other, and put some tension on the band. Turn your wrist outward away from the other hand and slowly come back in. Start with ten of each of these.

Roll up a towel, use a foam roll, or ball and squeeze in your hands. Hold the squeeze for 3-5 seconds and do ten of these. Then take a rubber band and put it around all of your fingers. Open up your hand moving all of your fingers outwards, and slowly come back in. Start with 10 and then work your way up.

The last ones will be soft tissue mobilization of the painful area. You can use a massage cream or lotion, but you don’t have to. Start off by pushing very lightly and make small circles directly over the scar. Then you can go up and down and side to side. Once you have done that about a minute, you can start pushing harder. 

Finally, you can do an ice massage to the area. You do not want to do an ice massage for more than 6-8 minutes so the ice doesn't irritate the skin. You will start off with a circular motion gently around the area. It will sting, burn, and then go numb. Once the area goes numb, you can push a little harder and massage the area. This can be done several times a day.

Related Videos:

Tennis Elbow Stretches & Exercises

Golfer's Elbow Stretches & Exercises

Stretches & Exercises for Gamers

As a gamer, you can have many aches, pains, and injuries. These stretches and exercises for gamers should help give you relief and get back to gaming.

The first set of exercises will loosen up the muscles, try not to push through pain, just get a slight stretch. You can prop your arm on a table and let your wrist hand off or you can hold it up in the air. Make a fist with your hand with your palm down. At your wrist, bend your wrist up to work the muscles in extension, and then bend it down to stretch the muscles in flexion. Then turn your fist to the side with the thumb toward the ceiling for a radial and ulnar deviation movement going up and down. This will stretch your thumb muscles as well.

Then put your arm straight out in front of you. With your palm down and making a fist, bend your wrist up with overpressure from your other hand. If this is not enough of a stretch, open up your fingers pointing them in the air and do the same stretch. Hold these for 30 seconds, and do three of them.

Now put your arm straight out in front of you. With your palm down, bend your wrist down with overpressure from your other hand. If this is not enough of a stretch, curl your fingers into a fist and do the same stretch. Hold these for 30 seconds, and do three of them.

Next, the exercise is a simple chin tuck. You don’t want to tuck it down to your chest, but take your chin, and pull it backwards. You can put your finger on your chin, as a target or starting point, and then tuck it in. Hold it for about 3-5 seconds, and then relax. Do this about 3-5 times.

For the last stretch, clasp your hands behind you, and push your hands downward and push your chest out. Do each of these 3 times for 30 seconds.

Related Videos:

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Stretches & Exercises

De Quervain's Syndrome Stretches, aka Blackberry Thumb

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