Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Exercises for carpel tunnel syndrome

If you suffer from carpel tunnel in the wrists, Yoga can be a blessing or a curse. Avoid hand balances and keep the base of the wrist lifted in poses such as downward facing dog (adho mukha svanasana). If it's not possible to lift the wrist base, then just keep the hands off the floor--no, not a down dog with no hands! Rather, no down dogs at all until you build the strength to lift the wrists.

Following are some great poses to help with this syndrome. Remember, I am not a doctor and don't claim to be one, please verify with your doctor prior to any exercise program.

1. Take a comfortable seat and bring the hands into anjali mudra. Keeping the fingers together, slowly draw the base of the wrists slightly away from one another. Hold for at least 6 long steady breaths.

2. Come into staff (dandasana) with the palms on the ground. If your arms are shorter, then place the palms on blocks. Stay about 6 breaths.

3. Stand in mountain (tadasana). On inhale lift the arms overhead, as if your arms are hands on a clock and they are pointing at the 11 and the 1. On exhale, bring the arms back down to your sides. Do this 6 times.

4. Standing or sitting bring the arms out straight in front of you. Palms facing down, widen the fingers as if you are wrapping your hand around a basketball. Hold for 6 breaths. Keep the shoulders relaxed.

5. With the arms still in front of you, inhale and bring the fingers together and point them at the sky; exhale making gentle fists and face the knuckles downward. Repeat 6 times. On the 6th time, pause in each of these positions for a couple of breaths.

6. Rise the arms over head and interlock the fingers; palms facing away from you. Hold for about 6 breaths.

7. Come into eagle pose (garudasana). If balance is preventing the arm position, then skip the legs and focus on the arms today. Hold each side for 2-3 breaths.

8. Take half forward fold (ardha uttanasana) at the wall for 6 breaths. Keep the fingers, especially the root of the index finger and thumb, against the wall as the center of the wrist base is lifted.

9. With or without the legs move the arms with relaxation into warrior I and then warrior II (virabhadrasana I & II). Move back and forth with your breath about 6 times. Pause the last time in each position for 2-3 breaths.

10. Downward facing dog (adho mukha svanasana) on a chair for 2-6 breaths. As before, keep a lift in the carpel tunnel (the center of the wrist base).

11. Sit on a chair and twist from side to side. Twist as you exhale and release the twist on inhale. Repeat on one side 6 times and then 6 times on the other side.

12. Take anjali mudra behind your back.

13. Relax in a supine position (savasana) for at least 10 minutes.

Note that some of these postures may be difficult. Instead of forcing or frustrating yourself to do them, take your time and start with a just a few that you find simple. As you gain flexibility, awareness, and strength, the others will come easier.

Enjoy and the best of luck to you!

Love Much,


Today is the first day of the rest of your life!

1 comment:

Nadine Fawell said...

Hi Kris!

nice post, and very relevant to all of us at some point, almost!
Your comment on my blog the other day really moved me, thank you.