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Thumb 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. If you have any problems doing the exercises please contact your therapist on the details below.

Thumb exercises

Thumb touches

Touch each finger tip with your thumb

Illustration of thumb touching first finger

Finger slide

Slide your thumb down each finger

Illustration of thumb sliding down a finger

Thumb stretch

Reach your thumb across your palm and then straighten the thumb out to the side

Illustration of thumb touching base of little finger and the stretched out to make an L shape

Thumb rotate

Gently rotate your thumb in a circular movement in both directions

Illustration of thumb making circles

Please do repetitions of each exercise times a day.

Activities to develop pinch strength

Pinch strength involved the thumb, first finger, and sometimes the middle finger. Tasks that can help build up pinch strength include:

  • doing up buttons on clothing
  • doing up zips on pencil cases, bags, clothing
  • peel fruit such as oranges or satsumas
  • open drinks bottles and lunch boxes
  • open yoghurts and crisp packets
  • use dropper to transfer water

Illustration of child doing up buttons

Illustration of child using pipette

Therapist name is

Contact details

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Please note: this is a generic information sheet relating to care at Sheffield Children’s NHS FT. These details may not 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 this information has been translated into another language from English, efforts have been made to maintain accuracy, but there may still be some translation errors. If you are unsure about any of the guidance in this resource or have specific questions about how it relates to your child, always ask your healthcare professional for further advice.

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