The Science Behind Our Gloves
Our hands and wrists were not intended to bear our weight, so it’s no wonder that many of us experience pain or discomfort when doing exercises like yoga poses or Pilates positions that require us to do just that — bear our body weight on our hands.
Putting full or partial body weight on the wrist in full extension stresses the soft tissues, resulting in pain or discomfort. Further aggravation is caused by doing many repetitions of wrist-stressing exercises or holding weight-bearing poses for a prolonged duration. Let’s look a little closer at the anatomy of the hand to understand why.
Anatomy of the Hand
The hand is designed more for mobility than stability. It is composed of 27 small bones, muscles, and ligaments that allow for a large amount of movement and dexterity, enabling us to perform a multitude of daily activities requiring fine precision and coordination. The two bones of the lower arm – the radius and ulna – meet at the carpal bones of the hand to form the wrist.
Unlike the foot, the hand does not have a large bone cushioned with a fat pad for bearing weight. Instead, it has small bones surrounded by soft tissue, nerves, and blood supply, including the median nerve, which crosses the wrist through the carpal tunnel. The ligaments, tendons, and soft tissues of the wrist are subject to strain when we put our weight on a fully extended wrist.
The contoured gel pad for Wrist Assured™ Gloves was designed with these anatomical considerations in mind to prevent carpal tunnel and to provide joint protection and comfort. Check out our selection of styles to find a pair that works great for your gym workouts or carpal tunnel syndrome relief!
The pad is thicker at the heel of the hand to provide you with a cushion similar to the fat pad on the heel of the foot. It supports the hand and cushions the carpal bones of the wrist.
Our wrist-support gloves have a wedge-shaped gel pad to decrease the angle of wrist extension by about 15 degrees, easing strain on the soft tissues of the wrist.
The gel pad in each glove is contoured to the palm to provide built-in arch support, cradling and holding your hand in place.
The V-shaped cut-out in our gel pads eliminates compression on the median nerve where it crosses the wrist.
There are many reasons for wrist pain and discomfort. Discomfort may be a result of an underlying medical condition, mild limitations in wrist range of motion, improper alignment of shoulders, arms, and hands, or reduced core and arm strength. Gentle and gradual stretching and strengthening exercises, along with proper body alignment and weight distribution, is recommended to reduce your wrist discomfort and improve your practice.
If you have significant wrist pain resulting from a more serious issue such as joint inflammation, arthritis, carpel tunnel syndrome, previous fractures, or surgeries of the wrist, it is essential that you consult your health care practitioner prior to beginning an fitness routine, yoga practice, or a wrist exercise program.
Wrist Assured™ Ergonomic Gloves are not intended as treatment for medical conditions. JPP is not liable for any injury resulting from improper usage.
To learn more about the complexities of the wrist joint, suggestions for improving form, strength, and mobility, or advice on modifying weight-bearing poses, refer to the following articles:
- Hand Wellness for Older Adults by Naomi Aaronson OTR/L & CHT
- Wrist Remedy by Dr. Timothy McCall MD
- Bearing Up Under Pressure by Julie Gudmestad PT & CYT (Iyengar)
- Yoga for Wrist Pain by Dr. Baxter Bell MD & CYT
- Working with Students who have Yoga Injuries, Part 3 by Dr. Timothy McCall MD
- Hands Down by Julie Gudmestad PT