|Cow pose (not shown here but I couldn't resist these pics of cows doing yoga) is one of the most common beginner's|
postures and is also one where yogis might first encounter wrist pain
|Cat-cow pose--many students find this tires their wrists out|
Props and Modifications
There are other strategies to minimise pressure on the wrists. These include:
- making a fist in certain poses such as cat-cow and plank (I had to do this when I had my wrist injury),
- being on your forearms instead of your wrists (such as forearm plank or forearm downward dog),
- making a little wedge or hill on your yoga mat to elevate the wrists slightly and send more weight down into the base of your knuckles and fingers (you could fold up a hand towel),
- placing your wrists slightly in front of your shoulders rather than beneath your shoulders (which will change the angle of the joint and make the stretch less extreme)
- practice 'Namaste' at your chest, pressing your hands together and keeping your wrists in contact as you draw your palms down towards your navel without letting the wrists come apart (to stretch across the palm side of your wrists if this is tight)
You'll no doubt find using your hands and forearms correctly is hard work. Spreading your weight evenly through your hands is tough and first when you are used to working that way, but, as with everything, with practice it will come.
A discussion about how you use your hands is not really complete without thinking about what is happening around your shoulder blades (scapulae), shoulders, and elbow joints but I will have to save that for another post. Suffice it to say that no part of your body works in isolation and you will find that a lot of stress can be removed from your wrists if you are using the rest of your body correctly.
For now, happy and safe practicing!