Tips for yoga wrist pain and strain prevention

The wrist is a fragile part of the body, so it is more prone to injuries. Yoga wrist pain is very common as the hands are mostly in stress while doing asanas. This happens mostly in cases of Yoga poses like Vinyasa or Ashtanga pose. If yoga positions are not done properly, then it can lead to wrist chronic pain and injuries. On stretching of the wrists, there is stress on the soft tissues like the tendons. Planks, push-ups, and balancing postures lead to pain in the wrists. There should be a certain adjustment and adaptation period while putting full loads on the wrists. With the correct alignment of the wrists, the perfect balance can be maintained between the wrists with flexibility and strength.

What is the correct hand placement?

While getting all the weight on your hands, you have to remember to keep all the fingers apart for the distribution of the entire weight of the body in equal proportions. While moving from one pose to another pose, keep in mind about the placement of the elbows. The alignment will become correct with regular practice. Maintaining the correct alignments help in preventing wrist injuries. If you are feeling overworked, then take some rest and practice again.

Using different props: you can use different types of props to increase the effectiveness of the yoga pose. It will also reduce the stress and help in attaining a yoga pose with ease. You can take help from someone else in the use of these props.

  • Foam or folded towel: For increasing the angle from the forearm to the top of your hand, you can use a towel or sponge under your arm for creating a wider angle. The main aim is adjusting the position for making the wrists and also heels of hands higher than the fingers.
  • Using a wall: Many students first start by using the wall as a prop, where they need to stand against the wall by placing their hands. Keep legs straight and as you hinge forward, allow the chest and hand to relax and drop in between the arms.

Some of the ways to avoid Yoga wrist pain

doing yoga is beneficial for health but it must be done in the right way. Else there can be more damage than recovery.

Even distribution of weight on the hands for avoiding yoga wrist pain: Try to avoid giving too much pressure on the bending fingers or the heels of the palms. This might need little practice but once you do it well, you can prevent yoga wrist pain to a great extent. While doing the practice, push the heels of your palms and the knuckles as well as fingertips equally to the ground. This helps in even distribution of the weight.

Strengthening of the muscles around the wrists to avoid yoga wrist pain: Healthy wrists are strong, yet they are flexible and can get weak. The muscles around the wrist joints must be balanced for reducing the risks of fractures, sprains, or strains. There are easy poses like the Crow pose for slow and balanced hand controls. It is a great way of building up the strengths of the body and the wrists.

Spreading the fingers and gripping the doors for preventing yoga wrist pain: For all hand balancing postures, just spread your hands and think twice after gripping the floor. The hands must be balanced. This technique of spreading all the fingers for tightly gripping on the floor is needed for the sensitivity and protection of the wrist.

Warming up for preventing yoga wrist pain: Warming up is the first thing for preventing wrist pain. Warming up ensures that everything will go smoothly. It not only helps in improving the lubrication of joints but also relaxing of the adjoining muscles. It also helps in blood flow in the body. It always prepares the body for all kinds of physical stress. Sun salutation helps in ensuring that the body and the wrists are warmed up for proper strengthening of the body.

Listen to the body: Over enthusiasm can lead to straining and injuring the wrists thereby causing more pain wrist. Most of the wrist pains occur only during the beginning when students don’t understand how to do all the asanas perfectly. This happens in the first attempt and no one can stop it. Listen to your body first before doing anything and remember that the wrists take time for adjustment for all the new challenges.

Strengthening of the core: With a weak core, there is always a tendency of shifting too much of the weight forward for leaning into the extended wrists. The leaning away from the main core ends up creating extensions in the wrists. With the well balanced and strengthened core, all other muscle groups also need to be activated and kept well-coordinated during planks. This way you can reduce the risk of yoga wrist pain.

Some yoga techniques for having healthy wrists

  1. Strengthening the shoulders and chest: There is the restriction in the shoulder joint all because of tightness in the tissues. It affects how you are placing your hands and palms on the ground for working on reducing the pain of wrists. Shoulder and chest flexibility is most recommended in these cases. Matsyasana and Gomukhasana, etc. are some effective yoga poses.
  2. Having an inner and outer spiral: The creation of two opposite spirals is a great technique of increasing the ability of shoulders, wrist joins, and forearms for bearing the weight. After placing hands on the mat, create an inward spiral by swaying the knuckles of the index finger and thumb stay on the ground. After creating the connection with the ground, move your elbows inside by making an external spiral.
  3. Elevating the palm of your heels: All the yoga students with weak wrists must take some support from under the heel of the palm. You can do that by folding the mat or even the blanket over the heel of your palm. The thumbs and fingers remain unsupported. There is a slight difference in the level made this creation and it helps the students in doing the poses without going for deep wrist extension.
  4. Doing some poses with ease for getting relief from yoga wrist pain: wrist pain emerges due to misalignment in the sensitive wrist parts with poses like plank, side plank, yoga push-ups, arm balances, and downward-facing dog. With practice comes treating the misalignment on the joints. The pain can be so much that people cannot bear it for long.
  5. Resting in between for reducing yoga wrist pain: While doing continuous exercises, taking rest is useful as the wrists can feel so itchy and achy at times. Rest returns the strength to the body and it is the best medicine at some point in time. Try taking therapeutic healing techniques for relief.
  6. Try enjoying a wrist therapy to help wrist pain: After being on the mat, do some gentle counter stretches such as rotating of wrists or flexing that works as wrist therapy. You can also evenly massage your forearm from the elbow crease for getting relaxation. All the major muscles moving around the radius and ulna of the forearm are responsible for providing relief and the tension also moves along the arm.
  7. Practicing of ahimsa and changing of the pose when required: Ahimsa refers to non-harming and, in this case, if your wrists feel too unbalanced then you can change your position for suiting what is best for you. Try out yoga positions like Modified plank or low push up by dropping your knees. You can bend your knees like in the case of a downward-facing dog for shifting all the weight of the wrists. If required, you can take help from a balanced yoga instructor as well.
  8. Taking your time: For taking care of yoga wrist pain, you have to take your time in learning all the small little practices and positions and try it with ease. Many fast-moving flow classes do not give much time and attention to the alignment but you can always do that and practice safe from your side. You are going to find peace with a healthy working style and yoga style.


If you are facing yoga wrist pains, try first with balancing of the arms on the yoga mat. You cannot blame the yoga mat for your disbalance. Buy a soft and comfortable mat for providing protection. Many people are familiar with all kinds of typical modifications for practicing postures with the hands bearing all the weight. Many people have tight hands with the wrist flexors being tight. And if you are looking for good therapy, then fill ice water in a sink and put your entire forearm until the elbow in the icy water. Keep it for about 7-9 minutes and do this thrice-weekly. Do not take out your hand hurriedly and do it slowly so that the blood can move properly in your wrists.