Strengthening your hands is easy with the Handmaster Plus, available now in the UK from Gaiam Direct. This patented product has two components which provide resistance to exercise the hand muscles both when opening and closing the hand. You squeeze the central rubber ball and an elasticated straps wrap round your fingers to provide resistance as you open your hand again.
This easy to use device is available in three different resistances depending on your needs. The light resistance version is ideal for rehabilitation of stroke patients or for easing the symptoms of RSI and carpal tunnel syndrome. At the other end of the spectrum, the heavy resistance can build extra grip strength for sports people such as golfers and climbers.
To see how easy it is to use Handmaster Plus to get stronger hands click here to see the video online now
We use our hands all day but it is hard to exercise the hand muscles safely and effectively to build up their strength. There are many people who would benefit from strengthened hand muscles such as guitarists and musicians, golfers, stroke patients in rehabilitation and sufferers from conditions such as RSI.
Opening and closing the hand is certainly better than doing nothing at all as it allows the muscles to move through a full range of movement. But without any resistance to work against the muscles are not being encouraged to work hard and therefore you are not building up your hand muscle strength.
One old fashioned way of providing resistance in these exercises is to squeeze a tennis ball. This provides resistance as the fingers move inwards but doesn’t help with the strengthening the muscles you use when opening the hand out again.
Doczac Enterprises of Washington state in the US believe they have the answer with their patented device Handmaster Plus. This combines a rubber ball which you squeeze in your hand with elasticated straps through which you place your fingers in order to get that resistance opening your hand again.
For those without such a device some other basic hand exercises are available at the Stretch Now website.
Repetitive strain injury (RSI), sometimes known as repetitive stress injury, is a group of conditions caused by the overuse of computer keyboards and mice, guitars, knives etc.
It is an overuse syndrome affecting muscles, tendons and nerves in the arms and upper back. Because of this it is also classed as an upper limb disorder. According to doctors it occurs when muscles in these areas are kept tense for very long periods of time, due to poor posture and/or repetitive motions.
RSI is occasionally known as cumulative trauma disorder or occupational overuse syndrome as well.
It is most common among people who work on assembly lines or at computers for long periods of time. You can help prevent or slow the progress of the condition through good posture, ergonomics and taking regular breaks from work.
Stretches, hand strengthening exercises and massages can reduce neck and shoulder muscle tension can help heal existing disorders.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a painful condition which occurs when the size of the carpal tunnel (part of the wrist) is compromised. This can be because of hand muscle imbalance and/or oedema (swelling).
Repetitive, unopposed gripping, grasping and finger flexion such as in sport, music and office work can cause hand muscle imbalance. Oedema is commonly linked to pregnancy and injury.
In hand muscle imbalance the nine muscles that close the hand become dominant over the nine muscles that open the hand. The carpal tunnel as a result of this becomes narrowed and partially collapses.
Handmaster Plus is an exercise gadget for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome treatment which conveniently tones and balances all 18 hand muscles in one simple exercise. It rebalances the wrist as part of any carpal tunnel syndrome rehabilitation protocol. Additionally, using the Handmaster Plus helps to re-establish blood flow lymphatic drainage to the distal upper extremity.
Handmaster Plus is the number one rated exercise product for the prevention, treatment and rehabilitation of hand muscle imbalance and blood flow stimulation. Handmaster Plus offers a specific exercise (see exercise #1) for carpal tunnel syndrome pre- and rehabilitation.
Hand muscle imbalance is also a possible cause of tennis elbow, golfer’s elbow and DeQuervain’s Syndromes.
Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) – a condition whereby the median nerve is compressed at the wrist which causes pain and muscle weakness in the forearm and hand. CTS is more common in women than it is in men, and can occur at any age but most often affects those in their forties. About 10% of people will get CTS at some point in their life.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome was first diagnosed at the beginning of the last century but has become widely known to the general public in the 1990s as more people have suffered from chronic wrist pain due to the rapid increase in office jobs.
The median nerve passes through the a channel in the wrist called the carpal tunnel. In addition to the nerve, nine tendons also pass through the carpal tunnel. The nerve can get compressed because of a decrease in the size of the canal or an increase in the size of the contents or both. Just bending the wrist at 90 degrees will decrease the size of the canal.
The symptoms of CTS may first appear when sleeping. They usually include numbness and a burning and tingling sensation in the fingers (called parasthesia) especially the thumb, index, and middle fingers. The nocturnal appearance of these symptoms is because many people sleep with bent wrists which compresses the carpal tunnel.
Later symptoms include:
- Difficulty gripping and making a fist
- dropping objects
It is important to note that these symptoms occur in other conditions and unless numbness or paresthesia are among the most severe symptoms it is unlikely to be carpal tunnel syndrome.