Exercises to relieve wrist pain

Do your wrists feel weak? Are you experiencing pain from overuse?

The nature of work today requires a lot of pressure to be placed upon our fingers and wrists.

How are repetitive wrist injuries caused?

We’re no longer getting the flexibility and mobility that writing with a pen or pencil would offer, and instead our wrists are immobilized as we type or text.

This repetitive movement places an excessive amount of pressure onto our wrists and the held positions can place stress all the way to our elbows, neck and shoulders if not regularly encouraged to move throughout it’s range capability.

Tools of the trade causing strainIMG_7148

I work with a client who is a tradeswoman and so she is using a lot of power tools which sends a lot of force into her wrist’s and arms, in particular using tools like a nail gun.

The wrist is placed in a constant extension with a power needed to keep the tool in place a similar pressure is transferred back to the wrist and so the joint overtime has become weak, causing her a lot of pain.

When training she now struggles to place any force at all in that position, so from push ups to just kneeling in a quadruped/four point kneeling position.

Good news the wrist doesn’t have to work alone

In the exercises I will show you in this post you will see that the wrist does not have to take on the bulk of force for your movements. Wrist motion, stability and flexibility comes from the a net work of muscles that connect through the wrist extensors/flexors, crossing the elbow joint all the way to the back muscles. So when we’re performing an exercise that requires the wrist we need to keep in mind that we should also be activating these supporting muscles as well so that some of the pressure and load will be spread out.

Just like the lower body when we perform  jump, we don’t want all the force to be going through just our ankles and shocking our knees, we’re looking to spread that force out which teaches the body to soften rather than stiffen up to protect the joints.

For more about the anatomical functioning of the wrist, and forearm watch the video below.


4 exercises to relieve your wrist pain

These exercises I will share with you, I learnt whilst practicing with White Rose Aikido in Kyoto, Japan. The exercises are used in both a practical sense and in a therapeutic way to prepare the wrist. In practicing Aikido you learn to use the body in harmony, rather than in a forceful manner. You’re cultivating your whole strength as well as your opponent using their energy to weaken them but also to protect them as well. The ancient martial art is a powerful non violent but very effective technique of self defense.

Watch this instructional video to practice these key exercises

Key Points to remember:

  • Our wrists need mobility throughout the day
  • Relieve some load and pressure from the wrists by actively using the supporting muscles of the forearm and shoulders to spread the force out through the body.
  • Practice these 4 exercises throughout the day providing you with breaks and relief from repetitive stress placed on your wrists




Published by jdv05

I'm an Exercise Scientist leading Personal Training and active tours around Parks Victoria protected spaces of Warburton and the Mornington Peninsula. A lover all things movement, incorporating nature into our sessions and personal workouts. I spent 2014 in Japan working as a tour guide and researching trails and writing active trips for both Australia and Japan. I enjoy competing in fun runs and trail runs, with my favourite being the Two Bays trail run. You can check out some of my workouts and fitness tips on my personal blog, www.getfitadventurept.com Qualifications include: Bachelor in Sport and Exercise Science, Certificates III and IV in fitness, Level 1 instructor in Mat Pilates, Wild fitness trainer, Level I and II boxing instructor, Surf instructor.

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