Approximately 5% of the population will be diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome at some point in their lives. Many are looking for carpal tunnel treatment without surgery due to the risks of surgery and the effectiveness of non-surgical options. Since yoga requires the use of your wrists while in many of the postures, including the right exercises for wrist pain during your practice can start to relieve the pressure on the nerve that is causing your carpal tunnel pain.
Carpal Tunnel Treatment Without Surgery
Due to the increased amount of people spending countless hours on computers and cell phones, carpal tunnel syndrome has seen a huge rise in recent years. Just like how my chronic lower back pain started from sitting in a computer chair for a majority of the day, I can now thank computers once again for my carpal tunnel and wrist pain.
I’ve never been comfortable with the thought of surgery so when I started practicing yoga and my hands started going numb after a while I started searching frantically for a way to relieve the pain. Like all other pains that have been building up over years, carpal tunnel syndrome was not going to be easy to get rid of.
Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when the median nerve in your wrist is inflamed, causing it to pinch the nerve and cause pain or numbness in your hand and fingers. Starting a regular yoga routine will allow your wrists to get stronger and the carpal ligaments to become looser, opening up space around the nerve that is causing your pain.
Exercises For Wrist Pain
Attempting to practice yoga with wrist pain can sometimes be too much if the swelling in the carpal tunnel has gotten really bad. If you are looking for a carpal tunnel treatment without surgery then I recommend doing the below exercises for wrist pain at least once a day.
1. Seated Wrist Stretch
In a seated position place both palms on the ground beside you. Rotate your wrists so your fingers are pointed away from your back and slowly begin lean back. Once you get to the point where it hurts if you keep leaning back, hold that position for a few breaths. Release your hands and place the backs of your hands on the ground, fingers still pointed away from your back. Begin to lean back the same way you did before and hold for a few breaths.
2. Complete Hand Release
Either standing or sitting, stretch one arm out in front of you with your palm facing outwards. Grab your fingers with your other hand and slowly pull your hand backwards towards your forearm. Once your wrist feels loose start to pull each finger one-by-one towards you. When you get to your thumb, press the thumb of your opposite hand deep into the space right under the thumb you are stretching. Massage this space for a few breaths while slowly adding pressure then release.
3. Gorilla Pose
From a standing position place your feet about hips width apart. Begin to lean forward with your hands reaching towards your feet while keeping a bend in your knees. Place your hands underneath your feet so your toes rest on the creases of your wrists. Gently start to straighten your legs as much as you can while putting slight pressure on your wrist creases with your toes. Hold for a few breaths and then release.
4. Standing Wall Wrist Stretch
While standing and facing a wall extend both arms straight out in front of you and place your palms on the wall, fingers facing upwards. Slowly begin to try and get your palms to touch the wall by leaning into the stretch a little bit. After a few breaths turn your hands so your fingers are facing the ground and once again try to get your palms to touch the wall. You might need to slightly bend your elbows to get the most of this stretch.
Finding relief from carpal tunnel syndrome can be very frustrating and painful at times. As much as I try not to focus on my wrist pain during my yoga practice it never fails to present itself if I’ve been on my wrists a lot during my practice. I’ve found making a fist and using your knuckles is a great way to modify your hand position if the pain becomes too much. Even though the pain and numbness is still there at times, I’ve noticed a drastic change since I’ve regularly been exercising my wrists and practicing yoga.
How do you deal with your carpal tunnel pain?
Stick With It!