Monday, February 21, 2011

The pain in my hands and arms?

Theresa massage therapist extrodinaire and awesome friend.
I told you about Theresa, my friend and massage therapist, we have been having massage day twice each month for ten years now.  Whenever I have an issue with pain she is my go to person.

Having said that, when we started the Co-op nine years ago I was doing twice the typing I was used to almost overnight.  We were about six weeks into the beginning of the new company and my wrists and the back of my fore arms were in terrible pain at the end of the day.  I wasn’t sure what was going on so naturally I called Theresa, after listening patiently this is what she said.

I needed to start exercising my hands and arms in the morning before work, WHAT?  Not active or resistance exercises but stretching exercises.   Active exercise, she told me, will continue to shorten the sore muscles while passive stretching will lengthen them.  She told me the pain was from tight muscles.  As much as I trust her with all my other aches and pains I just wasn’t sure she was right on this I really did hurt though and was willing to try exercises.

This is what I did:

Massaged the fore arm with cream to relax the muscles, gently rub up the arm then gently rub down the arm, I did this until the cream was rubbed in.

3X’s        Pulled each finger gently
                Pushed back on each finger to the point of gentle resistance
                Pulled to each side

The entire process took three minutes or less.  I did this on the way to work while I was stopped at traffic lights and in the evening before bed.

It took four days for the pain to go away.  I type way more now than I did when we were first starting out and never have pain anymore. I still do the exercises on the way to work too.

Repetitive movement issues are a result of muscle tissues that have shortened as a result of repetitive movement.  These exercises are  sort of like yoga for the fingers, allowing the muscles to relax first and then lengthening them.

Was it the beginning of carpel tunnel, I don't know I never needed a diagnosis.

Director of Member Services and Smiles
OurHealth Co-op, Inc


  1. I do not picture how to pull fingers "to each side." could you explain that just a bit more? The other two directions are pretty obvious to me. Thanks!

  2. Pull sideways, raise the finger you are working on and gently add pressure to the right side then the left side. What we are trying to do is establish a full range of motion to add flexibility to the hand and fingers. Let me know how you do. Thank you for your note.