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Ask the Expert: Clients with Wrist Pain

Helping Clients with Wrist Pain

Q: I have clients who complain of wrist pain when they are in positions such as Swimming on All Fours, Side Bend Prep and Cat Stretch. Can you suggest some modifications for these?

A: This is a very common complaint from clients and general weakness in the forearm and/or shoulder girdle can be contributing factors. Focus on exercises that will strengthen these areas. Also, try adding a thin cushion under the palm or roll up the mat (fingers off and lower) to slightly decrease the extension at the wrist. For four point kneeling positions, place the hands slightly forward of the center of an Arc Barrel (be sure the shoulders are still over the hands) to slightly flex the wrists and distribute more of the weight into their feet. If small pads and props are not available, try teaching some of these exercises (side bend prep, leg pull) on the forearms rather than the hands. The overall ROM will be decreased but it may help achieve the essence of the exercise.

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  1. Abhishek | Sep 01, 2017
    Most of my clients are benifited from annowing wrists pain imediatly when the wrist alignment is corrected. They strengthen their wrist by grabing the straps for all exercises where it requires holding the straps, the tendancy is that most of the time the client hold the straps loose which doesn't not help to improve forearm and the hand grip strength.  Fisting and gripping is the great ways to improve shoulder stability and strength over time. For more intense relife the biceps and triceps need to be toned on regular basis. 
  2. Laura Fitch | Mar 03, 2017

    Hi Noriko,

    From Merrithew Master Instructor Trainer and Senior Program Director, Education, Stefania Michas:

    "Use the foam grip handles, cushioned and rounded for added comfort for arm work with Hands in Straps. Be sure to keep the thumb over the Footbar to lengthen the wrist when performing Hands on Footbar or use a Jumpboard and/or Cross-Bow to decrease the angle, putting more weight into the feet and alleviating the weight in the wrists."

  3. Noriko | Feb 24, 2017
    Please also tell me how to modify Reformer exercises--hands in straps (side arm series, for example) and hands on bar (long-down-up stretches).  Thanks!
  4. Bryce | Feb 23, 2017

    Here's a great article as a reference. Some of these warmup wrist mobility exs are in the Halo course. https://gmb.io/wrists/

    When the wrist is still a barrier, equipment modification may be required like arc barrels and Halo forward sloping short handle or long handles in standardV...