It is amazing how much we rely on our hands. Even the most menial tasks are difficult to complete, however, without full use of your hands. Whether it is typing, buttoning a shirt, holding a spoon, or even turning a doorknob can be severely compromised if your hands are stiff or sore from arthritis pain.
That is why it is so important to engage in exercises for hand arthritis. When done correctly and regularly, these exercises can help you keep the mobility you have in your hands and prevent the pain and progression of the arthritis pain from taking over your life.
Exercise #1: Knuckle Bends
This exercise will help maintain strength, stability, and range of motion if you are suffering from arthritis in your hands.
- To perform this exercise, start with your hand straight, fingers together.
- Slowly, keeping your hand straight, bend your fingers down, but keep the bottom knuckles straight.
- Slowly and smoothly, straighten your fingers again.
Repeat this exercise a few more times on each hand to maintain range of motion.
Exercise #2: Fist Stretch
This exercise is a good way to maintain your grip, as well as to keep range of motion with minimal pain.
- Start as if you are going to shake somebody’s hand with your hand straight, fingers together.
- Then in a slow and smooth motion, make a fist with your thumb wrapping around the outside of your fingers.
- Do not squeeze.
- Straighten your fingers again, and repeat this exercise on both hands several more times.
Exercise #3: Thumb Stabilization
This exercise is another important one for maintaining grip strength.
- Start with your hand straight, fingers touching.
- Then in a slow and smooth motion, form a C with your hand, as if you are gripping a can or a cup.
- Return to the starting position and repeat this exercise again several more times on both hands.
Exercise #4: Fingertip Touch
You may have seen this one done by musicians who are actively trying to keep their fingers stretched and nimble. The same priciple applies to helping ward off the progression of different types of arthritis. The exercise works to strengthen and promote range of motion in each of the fingers.
To do this exercise:
- Start with your hand straight and your fingers together.
- Then, practicing touching the tip of each finger, one by one, to your thumb.
Perform this exercise several more times on both hands.
Exercise #5: The Finger Walk
This exercise also helps to strengthen the muscles in the hands, as well as promote more flexibility and range of motion in the fingers and many parts of the hand.
To do this exercise:
- Place your hand flat on a table in front of you with your fingers touching.
- Starting with the thumb, slide your thumb over to the side.
- Next, move your index finger so that it is as close as possible to the thumb, followed by the middle finger, ring finger, and pinkie finger.
- Then, walk them back starting with the pinkie finger and ending with the thumb.
Do this several times for each hand.
It is amazing how much we rely on our hands each day. When arthritis pain threatens to take away our quality of life, we want to do something about it to ease the pain and slow the disease from getting worse. One of the best ways to do this is to perform exercises for hand arthritis at home. These exercises require no equipment, and can be done in just a few minutes each day.