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Wrist Exercises for Knitters and Crocheters

If you knit/crochet a lot (or embroider!) . . . chances are you suffer from some achy wrists! I know that during last week, when I was crocheting up a storm, I certainly did!

Here are a few exercises that I do to relieve my sore wrists. Try to give these a whirl every hour or so while you’re working.

1. Swirl your wrist around! I don’t even know if this counts as an ‘exercise’… but moving your wrist in all sorts of directions (especially the directions it doesn’t move while you’re knitting/crocheting) really helps it out.

2. Prayer position. This is a little move I picked up from yoga class… it’s just like prayer position, but you’ll want to raise your elbows a little (while keeping your wrists still) to get a nice stretch in your wrist area.

3. Reverse wrist stretch. This one is the opposite of the stretch in point 2. Lay the back of your hand on a table, and press down lightly with your arm.

4. Rub those wrist bones! Use your thumb and massage all those little bones and tendons (and whatever else) that are in your wrist.

5. Squeeze. With your opposite hand, just squeeze your wrist. This gets all of your joint fluid flowing around.

Update! Stacey added a video showing some of these stretches here.

Happy wrists make a happy stitcher!



  1. Pumpkin SAYS...

    I was seriously just wishing that I had a set of exercises like these! This was really helpful, thank you!

  2. Thanks for sharing with us. I try to remind myself to do this throughout the day. Especially since I sit in front of a computer at work then crochet whenever I can. These exercises really do help. I also use a topical cream on the hands and wrist when they get sore, Voltaren.

  3. Ooh, this is very timely, thank you. I just finished an adult-sized sweater in a cotton/linen blend and it KILLED my hands and wrists. I could barely pick up a coffeecup afterwards!

    I will definitely try some of these 🙂

  4. Monica (craftwich) Lowe SAYS...

    My friend who is a massage therapist also rubs my arm from the wrist DOWN to the elbow, around the thumb tendon area, inside the arm. I get pains in my left wrist area (I’m a lefty hooker, and a yarn thrower to boot) and when she does this, it relieves the prickles for a couple weeks!

  5. Thank you for this post, it will be helpful for many crocheters so I will pin it on my Pinterest board. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Great tips! Will certainly try it next time.
    Thanks for sharing!

  7. You could try doing that first exercise while holding a small, 1 pound weight. It would build up your wrist strength. Love your blog!

  8. Joyce Ellis SAYS...

    Thank you for sharing, I needed this!

  9. tinfoilspider SAYS...

    OOh! my friend sent me the link to this to help me out. I have hypermobility syndrome (basically, too much elastic in my joints so they dislocate REALLY easily) and do a lot of crochet so these will help me for sure! although i might have to pass on number 3. can see me having issues with that one……

  10. Thank you for the set the exercises to hands.thank you, thank you.God bless.

  11. lucia thiel SAYS...

    hahaha I was just doing it to see if I could move like that and aside from the on the table and push down lightly one. I can.. but LOL when I used my thumb to massage my wrist my thumb cracked. what the heck xD wrong mussle.
    Kinda reminded me of when people go to yoga and someone laxes to much and farts, but in my thumb XD Lol bad thumb!

  12. I really need to try these exercises. I usually quit my project before I finish because I get tendonitis.

  13. Really nedd to try this. I usually quit my project because of tendonitis.

  14. Margaret SAYS...

    Thank you for this post, my wrist is always in pain,
    But will never stop with knit or crochet!

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  16. Gigi SAYS...

    Thank you. These exercises really help! I don’t want to use pain patches all the time for my sore wrists.

  17. ann SAYS...

    these exercises are perfect BUT please, please, please … remember your posture. It is all too easy for your shoulders to become hunched up as you concentrate on making your lovelies. Then all kinds of problems begin. Every 10 minutes or so, move your shoulders back and down and breathe out slowly .. do for a few moments and then return to your knit/crochet. You’ll feel so much better …. promise xx

    • Thank you so much, Ann for the reminder! My mom teases me because I have super-straight posture, so I rarely suffer from sore shoulders… but it means I forgot to put in the reminder to others 🙂

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  19. Peggy SAYS...

    Just got diagnosed with tennis elbow (I prefer crocheter’s elbow) in my right arm. It hurts!!! I am a tight crocheter, combined with doing too much amigurumi lately. Ice on my elbow at night and ibuprofen help, but I do need to strengthen my wrist and arm muscles.

    I read that if you do that first exercise while holding a full soup can, it works even better (as long as it doesn’t hurt, that is). Thanks for the tips!

  20. Sandra Hager SAYS...

    Another good one for relaxing your wrist—- dangle tour hand, jiggle your arm with your other hand, so you feel like your hand is “just dangling there”.

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  22. Kim Biddle SAYS...

    Thank you so much for the exercises, I go for hours crocheting and my wrists and hands do start to hurt. These exercises will help greatly. Thank you, I also forget to set up straight sometimes too.

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  24. jill SAYS...

    Thank you for these exercises. Very helpful!!

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