Wrist pain is a common ailment amongst any group of athletes that place load through their hand and wrists. It is particularly pertinent amongst new CrossFitters. Put simply, your wrist is the weak link. You will see some quite rapid increases in strength during your initial days of CrossFit, sometimes the wrist just can’t keep up with the demand. It’s important to focus on Mobility, Stability and Strength in not only the wrist but the surrounding structures such as the Forearm, Triceps, shoulders and lats to name a few. We will outline some steps that may help below but be sure to consult with your Coach for advice specific to you.
HOW TO PREVENT.
1. Invest in and use Wrist wraps even before you feel like you need them. Rigid or elastic straps, either will work but start using them.
2. Place a priority on warming up the wrist before any movements affecting the wrist.
3. Mobilise the Palm/Hand, Forearm, Tricep, Lat, Shoulder as part of your wrist warm-up routine.
4. Have your Coach analyse your Barbell and Gymnastic hand positioning and technique. This will give some clues as to wether your issue is mobility or stability related or both. The movements to hone in on are the Front squat, Thruster, OH Squat, Push press, Push/split jerk and Pullup and ring dip grip
5. Pay attention and ensure you are obtaining a neutral wrist position in your lifts. Heavy weights will prevent you from achieving this if you haven’t mastered it previously so take your time and build the foundation.
HOW TO TREAT.
1. Rest – Cut back on or substitute heavy barbell movements and modify gymnastic movements until the wrist is recovered.
2. Limit the weights you lift until your wrists are strong enough to handle the load. Bad wrist position should be as much priority as the other faults that would normally cause us to stop adding weight.
3. Ice and/or Anti inflammatory rub can help reduce inflammation and relieve pressure and pain in the wrist.
4. Ergonomics – Examine your daily work tasks and if possible ensure you are ergonomically sound whilst doing repetitive wrist based movement, Keyboards, scissors & tools should be suited to task.
5. Stretching and Mobility – You need to work hard at mobility to gain range of motion, once you’ve gained it you need to work hard to keep it. Be relentless with your stretching and mobility – Ask your coach how.
6. Wrist wraps – Get them, use them.
WRIST WRAPS CAN DRAMATICALLY IMPROVE YOUR ABILITY TO IMPROVE AND MAINTAIN A GOOD WRIST POSITION.
Head Coach & Owner – CrossFit Confront