Hand and Wrist Stretches for Crocheters

By Rachel Choi – 11 Comments

Do your hands or wrists get tired when you crochet? Do they get sore or cramped up? If so, you’re not alone, it happens to a lot of us. Here are some stretches that I found across the web that may help you stretch your hands and wrists. Of course, all stretches aren’t made for all people, so do what works for you. You can even take small breaks in the middle of crocheting (it always works for me).

ergocise.com – There are quite a few activities for your hand and wrist on this site. There’s even a section for warm ups, stretches and strengthening. It might be more than what you’re looking for, but take a look anyway to see what works for you. This site also has neat animations to show you how to do the suggested hand and wrist movements.

shelterpub.com – This is a quick PDF file which has a few stretches for you to try. It’s intended for people who do a lot of repetitive motion with their hands, wrist and forearms, such as crocheters and even desk workers. This simple worksheet is easy to print out and hang on your wall.

No matter what stretches you decide to do, always be careful while stretching (I don’t want you to hurt yourself). If you’re not sure what stretches are best for you, you can always ask your doctor, he/she is the expert.

Personally, I like to take small breaks if my hands or wrist get sore while crocheting. Sometimes I even flex my fingers or wiggle them around. It’s even a good idea to get up and do something else, then come back to crocheting when you hands feel all better.

How do you like to handle your hand or wrist aches while crocheting? What stretches do you do?

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  1. Maureen says:

    I suffer the opposite issue. I suffer from tendonitis and crocheting is what helps it. I have just moved and had to find my crocheting again as my wrist is starting to hurt again not using it.

  2. Lisa says:

    Along with my wrists and hands, my shoulders hurt after a while, usually on one side. I think I tend to slouch a bit and that causes stress across my shoulders. I have to remind myself to sit up straight and taking breaks really is key!

  3. Cyndie D Richards says:

    All these exercises are great! I do them & a few others B4 & after I crochet. Many years ago I got tendinitis in my elbows so bad that I couldn’t turn a doorknob. The doctor gave me cortisone shots (ouch!) & told me not to crochet for 8 weeks. I darned near went crazy. So now I daily exercise these muscles, etc. Thanks for posting this.

  4. Singlemom Rule says:

    Hi everyone,

    A break of every 30minutes to 1 Hr is advisable 🙂 Do some walk, site seing to your garden, visit your rose and arabian jasmine…:) Try to watch some kids playing around 🙂

  5. Rachel says:

    This is perfect timing Rachel! This last week my wrists and arms have been KILLING me from typing, knitting and crochet. There were even tears. I was sidelined for DAYS. Talk about frustrating. It’s been a real wake up call. A huge wake up call. I’ve been doing stretches, taking breaks and and icing through the pain. My long term goal is to mix up picking and throwing in knitting and even learn to crochet with my left hand. I figure the more ways I can alternate hands and mix things up the better!

  6. Lane† says:

    Thanks for sharing these, Rachel! I play the violin too. So these have been helpful for that too.

  7. Melissa says:

    My wrist and fingers don’t really get all that tired when crocheting. I’m curious how many people hold the hook like a knife, or a pencil. Just from casual conversation, I find the us “knifers” don’t really get all that much pain in the wrist and hand. Wonder if that makes the difference….

  8. Carole :) says:

    I just checked out the Ergocise.com site ~ it’s WONDERFUL!! I just got diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis yesterday and have been so unsettled about my possibly losing my ability to crochet and do my needle work. I’m already struggling with day-to-day chores and these exercises, I’m hoping, will help me to maintain *some* mobility for a little longer. Thanks for sharing these, Rachel.

    Melissa ~ I’m a “knifer”, too, and think you might be right ~ :>) I don’t have the pain or discomfort like some I know who hold their hooks like a pencil. Boy, am I thankful for that ~ LoL ~ I don’t need any extra, for sure! This is probably one reason I can still manage to keep on crocheting, too. :>)

  9. I’m a knifer as well…I recently tore my rotator cuff…My right rotator cuff!! Anyway, I couldn’t even raise my hand as high as my waist at first. I thought if I can’t crochet, I’ll die! I tried, and discovered that I could do it, even though I could even when I could only crochet with my hands down in my lap!…but it made my shoulder get tired and sore really quickly. I always had suspected that when you hold your hook like a knife that you ease up on your fingers and wrists, but that you use your shoulder more than those who hold the hook like a pencil. I think my recent experience proves that. My shoulder is much better and I have regained most of my function (will eventually have to have surgery), but I do have to take frequent breaks, because of shoulder and neck pain on that side. I used to be able to crochet for hours and hours…but I can’t to that any longer.

    • Janet says:

      I recently started an Esty shop and have been doing a lot of crocheting and now how rotator cuff tendonitis.
      Any tips for exercises or a way to sit that will help pain in shoulder

  10. Merci Ahlstrom says:

    Thanks a lot for the info. I really needed it.

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