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7 Tips on How to Protect Your Hands and Wrists While Doing Yoga

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Yoga is a great workout, with its wide range of poses covering different intensities of physical activity. However, some ranges or poses, such as handstands and planks, can put extra stress on your hands and wrists. If you do it wrong, you can end up developing conditions like chronic pain or even carpal tunnel syndrome.

Fortunately, it’s usually easy to find a specialist to help, such as the hand doctor Singapore’s yogi and yoginis trust to treat and care for your hands and wrists. Still, it’s better if you can avoid injury in the first place so you can continue doing your workouts without worry. Here are some tips you can follow:

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Start with a warm-up

Whether you prefer yoga or other types of exercise, you’ll enjoy many benefits from warming up first. For one, it increases blood flow to your muscles so you can perform more strenuous poses or routines more easily. It also improves your flexibility, which is important for doing more advanced yoga poses. Finally, warming up helps loosen your joints and prepare your muscles for stress, which won’t feel too tired after your workout.

Some great warm-up exercises include marching in place, shoulder rolls, knee raises and knee bends, as well as squats. You can also do side shuffles, leg swings, walking jacks and butt kicks. Start slowly for the first 5 minutes, then slowly increase until you complete a 10- to 15-minute warm-up.

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Press down with your fingers and spread it

Many yoga poses require you to put your hands flat on the floor. It seems simple enough, but you can actually do it wrong. The best way to avoid any unnecessary stress on your fingers, palms and wrists is to spread your fingers and press down completely. Imagine gripping the floor, but without bending your fingers. Doing this distributes your weight on your hands, minimizing the weight your wrists have to bear.

Note that you may apply too much pressure the first few times you do this. You also need to get used to changing your grip depending on the way you move. If you find it difficult to get used to this position, make adjustments as you go and keep practicing to find the right balance.

Use wrist support pads or rollers

Have you seen those mouse pads with a wrist pad or maybe keyboards with padded wrist rests? There is actually a similar product for yoga. The names vary, of course, but they are essentially foam rollers or wedges that you can rest your wrists on. These products can help take pressure off your wrists, prevent strain, and engage your entire hand when moving.

Be sure to use two supports, even if you only need them for one wrist. This ensures symmetry and that your other wrist is not injured.

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Let your knees carry your weight

There are many poses in yoga that put a lot of your weight on your hands and wrists based on the position alone. However, you can always compensate by bending your knees a little and letting them bear some of your weight. This relieves some pressure from your hands and wrists, as well as allowing you to shift your weight much more easily.

That said, if you find yourself relying too much on your hands and wrists to maintain a certain yoga pose, consider developing your core. With ample core strength, you’ll be able to support your weight with ease.

Watch your shoulders

When you put weight on your hands, you should draw your shoulders back rather than rounding them forward. Keeping your shoulders away from your head will make your upper back more stable. It will also provide better support for your upper spine and help you breathe easier in such a position. Most importantly, correct shoulder position prevents your wrists and hands from carrying too much weight.

Use a thinner yoga mat

Having a soft yoga mat can come in handy when you need to hold a kneeling position. It’s also great to have a comfortable surface to lie on when you’re exhausted and need to catch your breath after a hard session. However, a soft surface is bad for your wrists and hands because it provides less support.

If you are not comfortable doing yoga on a bare floor, get a thinner yoga mat than you are used to. Either way, having a slightly firmer surface to practice your posture on will encourage you to focus more on correct body alignment.

Take things one step at a time

Last but certainly not least, take your time when doing yoga. It’s not a competition about who can perform and hold the most complicated moves. If you experience pain or any kind of discomfort while doing a movement, stop. Analyze the conditions that led to the situation so you can address it.

Ultimately, the most important thing in yoga is consistency. With enough dedication and practice, you’ll soon be able to do those challenging poses.

Namaste!

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