Wrist Pain During Push-ups

The wrist is the most common joint site for pain during push-ups. Pain is often the most common complaint for push-up variation. Some older individuals and those with osteoarthritis suffer from pain in the wrist to a lesser extent. Pain may occur between the radius, ulna, and metacarpal/metatarsal hoods during push-ups, especially when other joints are already strained by exercise or injury.

Furthermore, pain occurring in these locations is more common among women than men. Also, many recreational athletes report wrist pain during their workouts that can be debilitating enough to limit them from performing an exercise they enjoy.

Tips to Get Rid of Wrist Pain during Push-ups

Wrist pain

1) Working with a clinician can help determine if the pain is coming from a dermatomal location or a joint-based location. In this way, a clinician can rule out other abnormalities that may be present.

2) If the pain is due to disorders of the joint, not muscle related, some exercises can help strengthen the surrounding musculature and reduce stress at the joints themselves. You can use bracing of various types in this case to strengthen the muscles around a joint while allowing you to continue your routined push-ups without wrist pain. The wrist brace has been proven in helping increase push-ups capacity.

3) Prevent injury. Ensure that you are ready to move the joints through the pain by doing an assessment of your motion and endurance. Perform ankle and wrist mobility before engaging in the exercise which can help keep you injury free in the future.

4) Eat a healthy diet, not just for your waistline now but also for the rest of your life.

5) If you are an older individual with osteoarthritis, it may be difficult to lift heavy weights or engage in high-intensity exercises. Pay attention to your joint pain signs and make sure you can perform these activities before moving beyond them.

6) Consider taking an over-the-counter pain medication if the cause of the pain is muscle related. These medications claim to increase the body’s capacity for pain. And they can help you move past your pain in the shortest amount of time.

7) Do not attempt a new exercise without reviewing your assessment of your joint mobility and endurance first. There is no point in attempting an exercise if you are already unable to do it with any degree of comfort.

8) Increase your flexibility through yoga or tai chi, walking, or any other method. This helps you improve range of motion. Practice a passive stretch before your workout so you will be ready when you engage in push-ups.

9) Try gentle wrist mobilizations to help keep your wrists in proper alignment.

Should you do Push-ups if you have Wrist Pain?

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It’s recommended not to do push-ups if pain is occurring in the wrist due to joint issues, such as arthritis. If you decide to do it anyways and are still getting wrist pain, follow stretches before or after the exercises while trying to avoid locking your wrists.

Likewise, if you get wrist pain during a practice session, stop immediately and try passive stretches before starting again. If you still feel pain, it is recommended that you seek professional help.

Keep in mind that if you have wrist pain while doing push-ups, there are other alternative exercises for push-up, which are equally effective:

  • Plank
  • Pallof press
  • Push press
  • Wall shoulder tap
  • Reverse push-up
  • Jackknife
  • Handstand push-up
  • Inverted row
  • Hindu pushup
  • Bench press

Also, the push-ups is just one of many exercises that can cause wrist pain. If you are experiencing discomfort in other exercises, like the bench press for example, do not hesitate to consult your doctor.