Hand Stretches for Knitters and Crocheters

Jun 2021

Before there was ‘just one more episode’, there was ‘just one more row’. We’ve all been there, in the middle of a project that we just can’t put down because we’re desperate to see the finished result. This often leads to us powering through the wrist and neck pain that can sometimes come with knitting, crocheting, or any craft that you like to do whilst you’re slumped on the sofa.

To keep your joints healthy and your projects closer to being finished, we’ve put together a list of hand exercises and stretches to relieve your knitting pain.

Remember to take each stretch slowly so that you are not doing any further damage to your muscles.

Before we get into the stretches, if you’re experiencing a lot of strain when you knit, here are a few things that you can try to prevent it:

  • Try changing your technique –
    There are lots of ways to hold your knitting needles or crochet hook, so if you think you’re experiencing more strain than you should, maybe it’s your technique! It’s always a good idea to try out different techniques (even if you consider yourself an expert) because, with many of us being self-taught knitters and crocheters, it’s easy to pick up some bad habits along the way.
  • Try sitting in a different seat –
    If you find yourself slowly sinking into your plush sofa as you knit, try sitting in a chair that gives you better posture.
  • Avoid bad posture in other areas of your life –
    If you can never get your desk chair and computer screen in the right position and always have pains in your shoulders at work, knitting is only going to make this flare back up – so fix your desk chair!

Stretch no. 1

Stretch your fingers by spreading them as wide as you can and hold in this position for 10 seconds. Then, close them into a fist and hold for another 10 seconds.

Stretch no. 2

Hold your hands together palm to palm, in a prayer position, and rotate your wrists (turning away from your body) so that your fingers begin to point towards the ground. Stop rotating when you feel a slight stretch and hold for 10 seconds.

Stretch no. 3

Extend your arms out in front of you and point your fingers to the ceiling by bending your wrists backwards. Hold in this position for 10 seconds.

Stretch no. 4

Extend your arms out in front of you and make a fist with your hands. Bend your wrists downwards so that your fists and now turned towards the ground and hold the position for 10 seconds.

Stretch no. 5

Extend your arms out in front and hold your hands out so that your palms are facing each other (but not touching). Make a fist with both hands, closing your thumb inside your fingers, and bend your wrists towards the ground. Hold for 10 seconds.

Don’t forget to stretch your neck and shoulders too! Remember to stand up and do the following exercises.

  • Roll your neck from side to side.
  • Interlace your fingers and stretch your arms out in front of you, with your palms facing away from your body. Hold for 10 seconds.
  • Interlace your fingers behind your back and push out your chest, holding for 10 seconds.

Remember to take each stretch slowly so that you are not doing any further damage to your muscles.

So the next time you’re powering through another row to get the end of your knitting project, remember to take 5 minutes to have a break and stretch your hands and shoulders. Head to our Instagram to save our reel (or our Pinterest to save our pin) so that you can come back to these stretches whenever you need them.

If you have any tips for avoiding strain when knitting and crocheting, make sure you leave them in the comments below so that we can start a log of tips and tricks.


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