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Hand and wrist exercises

Therapy exercises

This material has been designed to help you remember the exercises your therapist has taught and practised with you. The exercises should be done slowly. You may have some discomfort whilst doing these exercises after your operation or injury. If pain limits your ability to do your exercises, then timing them around your pain relief may be helpful. However, if pain persists or you have severe pain please seek advice from a healthcare professional and stop the exercises.

How many times should I perform these exercises?

It is recommended that each exercise is repeated 10 times and performed a minimum of 3 to 4 times a day. Ensure the exercises are staggered throughout the day.

Managing my swelling

Swelling is common in the first few weeks following an injury or operation. The following exercises will help with this.

1 Composite finger flexion and extension

hand open, fist clenched, fist clenched and rotated

  1. Start with your elbow resting on the table and your hand straight, then slowly bend your fingers into a fist.
  2. Return to the starting position.

2 MCP flexion

hand open, fingers bent forward, fingers and thumb bent together

  1. Start with your elbow resting on the table and your hand straight, then slowly bend your fingers at your knuckles, keeping the rest of your fingers straight.
  2. Return to the starting position.

3 PIPJ and DIP flexion

hand open, fingers bent, fingers bent whilst turning wrist

  1. Start with your elbow resting on the table and your hand straight.
  2. Keeping your knuckles straight, bend your fingers.
  3. Return to the starting position.

4 Finger abduction

hand out, fingers spread

  1. Start with your elbow resting on the table and your hand straight.
  2. Spread your fingers apart, then use the other hand to separate your fingers further.
  3. Return to the starting position.

5 Finger extension

hand out, other hand pulling fingers back

  1. Start with your elbow resting on the table and your hand straight.
  2. Using your other hand to assist, bend your finger back until you can feel a stretch.

6 Thumb abduction

hand out, thumb raised pointing forwards

  1. Start with you hand resting on a table.
  2. Keeping your fingers straight, slowly move your thumb away from your fingers and palm.
  3. Return to the starting position.

7 Thumb extension

  1. Start with you hand resting flat on the table.
  2. Keeping your fingers straight, slowly move your thumb outwards.
  3. Return to the starting position.

8 Thumb opposition

  1. Start with your elbow resting on the table and your hand straight.
  2. Move your thumb to the tip of your index finger, then to each fingertip one by one.
  3. Once your thumb reaches the tip of your little finger, slide your thumb down to the base of your little finger.
  4. Return to the starting position.

9 Wrist flexion

hand flat on table, hand bent over side of table

  1. Rest your forearm on a table with your hand over the edge.
  2. Bend your wrist down towards the floor.
  3. You can use your other hand to gently push to increase the stretch.
  4. Return to the starting position.

10 Wrist extension

hand flat on table, lift hand towards ceiling

  1. Rest your forearm on a table with your hand over the edge, then bend your wrist upwards towards the ceiling.
  2. You can use your other hand to gently pull backwards to increase the stretch.
  3. Return to the starting position.

11 Radial and ulnar deviation

hand straight on table, rotate wrist down and up

  1. Rest your forearm on the table, with your hand over the edge and your little finger facing the floor.
  2. Keeping your hand and fingers straight, slowly move your hand down towards the floor, then upwards towards the ceiling.
  3. Return to the starting position.

 

Notes:

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Disclaimer

Please note this is a generic information sheet relating to care at Sheffield Children’s. The details in this resource may not necessarily reflect treatment at other hospitals. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professionals’ instructions. If this resource relates to medicines, please read it alongside the medicine manufacturer’s patient information leaflet. If you have specific questions about how this resource relates to your child, please ask your doctor.

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S10 2TH

United Kingdom

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