Strength training for the hands

Submitted by Linda Coe

So many of us use our hand in repetitive motion, especially with the increase of personal computer use. Have you ever thought about building up the flexibility and endurance of your hands? Shouldn't you take care of your hands the same way you would take care of other parts of your body before engaging in exercise?

To reduce fatigue of the fingers and hands there are some warming, stretching and strength building exercises that are easy to do and won't take much time. These exercises should be done on a daily basis to maintain health for your hands.

Mark F. Deck, in his book Theory and Practice of Therapeutic Massage, illustrates And explains some hand exercises that would prove beneficial. Some of these are as follows:

Exercise # 1

Hold your hands at chest level and shake them vigorously for about ten counts. This exercise warms and limbers the hands.

Exercise # 2

Hold your hands at chest level. Use a small ball or clinch your hands into tight fists. Squeeze the ball or fists as hard as you can while counting to ten. Repeat this exercise several times. This exercise will strengthen your hands and wrists.

Exercise # 3

Place your palms together at chest level. Press one hand against the other back and forth. This will make your wrist? supple and strong. Repeat the presses about ten times.

Exercise # 4

Beginning with the thumb of the left hand, massage all the fingers of mat hand by rubbing each finger from the knuckles of the hand lo the tip of the finger. Repeat on the right hand. This exercise stimulates circulation and helps keep the hands supple.

Exercise # 5

Hold your hand in fists at chest level Rotate both hands in circles forward ten times, then reverse ten times. This exercise strengthens and limbers the wrists.

Exercise # 6

Press the fist of one hand into the palm of the other, with each Land resisting the other. Do this ten times on each hand. This exercise will strengthen the entire aim and the hand.

Exercise # 7

Hold a semi-soft foam rubber ball between the thumb and first finger. Squeeze the ball as hard as possible ten times. Repeat, squeezing the ball with the second, third and fourth fingers. Shake and massage that hand and repeat the exercise with the other hand.

Exercise # 8

Clasp your hands just below your waistline at the back of your body. Pull your arms upward while holding the tension for ten counts. Pull your arms downward for ten counts. This exercise strengthens the muscles of your arms, shoulders and hands.

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