Today’s post is yoga related and it addresses the common problem of wrist pain during practice.
So why do we get wrist pain and how can we work towards preventing it?
Wrist pain can occur for a number of reasons, it might be that your arms could do with some time focusing on strengthening exercises. You might be lacking strength in the forarm and upper arm.
It might be from overuse, a few too many chaturanga dandasana’s (maybe practiced too quickly or incorrectly )
Or it may be that you are not distributing the weight evenly through the hand.
Here are a couple of things you might try next time you practice;
1.Always warm up the wrists before practice. (This should go without saying) Check out my video on wristwarm up’s here.
2. Create Bandha – In this case (hasta bandha) Bandha is loosely translated as a ‘body lock’. By spreading the fingers wide on the mat, gripping inwards with the palm as if trying to open the lid of a jar to create lift and activation, engaging the muscles around the wrist joint to in effect wrap around the joint and protect it.
3.Build strength slowly and consciously. If you feel as though you are sacrificing form for speed or amount opt for a supported version of a pose for example lower your knees to the ground in plank or when lowering from chatarangu. Repeating the same thing incorrectly over time can lead to strain or injury.
4. Angle your middle finger forward when you are in downward facing dog or table top. This is the general rule of thumb (no pun intended) however there are always some exceptions. Have your yoga teacher take a look to see that everything is ligning up for you nicely when you do this. Become aware of the angle of your hand throughout the practice. I see a lot of people forget about hand placement when they are concentrating on another element of a posture. It is important to be conscious of everything from your baby toe to your perineum(more on that another day)
5.Flexion, if you do not have a limited range of motion and can not take your wrist into 90-degree flexion (This can be due to injury or genetics) it’s okay to have the shoulders stacked behind the shoulder joint slightly.
You can use a prop like a rolled up mat (as much as you need) to support the angle that best suits you.
5. If you have an injury or pain you can always bring your forearms to the ground and work on strenthening the upper arm and shoulder girdle. There are also many ways to create a practice without using your wrists at all, so that you can continue to practice while you recover.
Be kind and enjoy.
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Feel at ease