Pain Free Working

Stretching Exercises to Prevent Repetitive Stress Injuries

Especially if you spend long hours working on a desk and typing on a keyboard, your risks of developing Repetitive Stress Injuries (RSIs) are high. RSIs are caused by prolonged repetitive movement and improper alignment of the wrist and fingers. This happens because the median nerve compresses, increasing the risk of carpal tunnel syndrome and other hand and wrist injuries.

To prevent serious injuries, it’s important to maintain a healthy positioning of hands, wrists, and fingers while working. Also, take a few minutes every day to conduct these stretching exercises to combat RSIs.

Shoulder Rotation

You’ve probably done this a lot in your high school PE class, but it’s become all the more relevant now in your daily life. Rotating your shoulders will help relieve the stress and pressure in the area caused by prolonged sitting and working.

Simply roll your shoulders forward and up, as if you’re trying to reach your ears. Hold for a few seconds and repeat 5 times. Do the same in the opposite direction by rotating your shoulders backward for the same number of reps.

Wrist Rotation

Close your hands into a soft fist and rotate your wrists 10 times in each direction — 10 to the left and 10 to the right. Then position your hands in a praying position and bring your hands towards and away from your body. Do this 10 times as well.

Finger Stretch

Reach forward with one hand and stretch your fingers outward. Starting from your pinky to your thumb, pull your fingers gently towards your chest and hold for 10 seconds. Do the same to each finger on your other hand.

Wrist Stretch

Just like the initial position of the finger stretch, reach one hand forward. This time, you want to stretch your entire wrist, so pull your entire hand towards your chest. Hold this position for 30 seconds and do the same with your other hand.

Arm Stretch

This final stretching exercise will address your fingers, wrists, shoulders, and elbows simultaneously. Interlock your fingers on both hands together and stretch your arms forward with your palms facing away from you. Hold for 20-30 seconds then bring your arms up in the air to the point wherein your arms are touching your ears. Hold for 20-30 seconds more before releasing. While doing the exercise, be mindful of your breathing. Inhale and exhale slowly.

Sheena Bergado

Sheena first met Tricia on a back pain support forum. After becoming online friends they launched in 2019. Due to suffering from upper back and shoulder pain, Sheena vows to find the best ergonomic office equipment in the Philippines to help fellow desk workers.