Geeky Wrist Syndrome

I don’t know if this really qualifies as being about technology. But I know that a lot of people in my industry – high-tech or writing – suffer from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, a painful inflammation of the nerves in the wrist. I know I do.

I no longer wear wrist splints to work but I have to admit that was once necessary. Nowadays I listen to every little twinge of pain in wrists, neck, and hands because I know full-well what follows those early warnings. I also invest heavily in ergonomic work station equipment. I have a good chair, adjust my monitor so that I don’t have to turn my head or look up or down to see the screen, and adjust my keyboard and tray so that my elbows are at 90 degrees and my wrists don’t have to pronate much when I type. The only thing missing in my ergo-rig at the moment is one of these Humanscale monitor arms:

No matter how carefully I tweak my workstation, take frequent breaks, and sit up right when I type, though, I find I can’t do enough to make I possible for me to take a Yoga class without having to take the rest of the week off from work because of wrist pain. I like Yoga. But it’s hard on the wrists. Many people have told me that I should try a different Yoga teacher or Yoga style. But how many weeks off from work can I really afford? So I skip it. Even Pilates leans too heavily on the wrists so I feel left out of the entire celebrity-toning-through-Pilates movement.

I said something to this affect in my book, or here on or somewhere else a while back and a public relations professional – Paula Wilbert– saw it and contacted me. She makes these odd fingerless gloves designed exactly for people who have typed their wrists into a state of peril yet who want to do yoga and mat Pilates: The Wrist Assuredâ„¢ Gloves (WAGs).

They have a special padding built in that keeps the wrist from bending quite so extremely as it usually does in Down Dog, plank or other poses that put all your body weight on your hands.

Paula sent me a pair.

I’ll admit they have been in my gym bag for a long time. This is mostly because I’m afraid to go to Yoga. But I did have the courage to go to a Pilates class recently. In fact, I went to two. The first time, I forgot the gloves. I longed for them during Plank and decided I was just being stupid to even attempt Pilates when I had to sit out 10 minutes of the class due to shooting pain in my wrists. Somehow, though, I found myself in that same Pilates class on Monday. The same teacher was running the show so the classes were similar. This time – with my tough-looking gloves making me appear to be the one leather biker in a class of toned and groovy types – I was able to keep going even when the woman next to me was taking a time out to rub her obviously painful wrists. Cool!

I actually put this class on my schedule. Will I be able to do Pilates regularly and still work?

Thanks Paula!

%d bloggers like this: