By Angela Kneale, OTD, MA, OTR/L, NBC-HWC
Body tension and stress often seem like inevitable problems in the modern world. To combat this, include ball rolling and self-massage techniques throughout each day to counteract some of the repetitive movements and poor postural habits associated with daily tasks.
Here are a few movements selected from the book, Ball Rolling for Happy, Healthy Hands, to begin exploring self-care techniques for hands, arms, shoulders, and neck. Remember to breathe deeply and fully, releasing tightness and tension during every exhalation. Choose the amount of pressure that feels best for you, while staying mindful of body posture and positioning.
1) Top of Shoulder Roll & Release
2) Outer Forearm Roll & Release
Benefits: Releases tightness and tension, improves elbow, forearm and wrist mobility, enhances arm function
3) Thumb Roll & Release
4) Knuckle Decompress
After rolling, take a moment to notice any changes in your flexibility, ease of movement, comfort, and alignment. Ball rolling encourages the body-mind connection while discovering movements that feel good to your hands, arms, shoulders, and neck. Make it a habit to perform these movements daily and do not forget to have fun in the process. We are more likely to adopt new routines of self-care when they are enjoyable.
Register for a Ball Rolling Workshop
Try a ball-rolling workshop to learn how to release tension in hands and the body. This 2-1/2 hour experiential workshop introduces a fun and accessible method for providing self-care for overused hands. Each participant will receive four Small Health Balls and Ball Rolling for Happy, Healthy Hands instructional book to take home after the workshop. Click here to learn more about Ball Rolling for Happy, Healthy Hands.
Duke Integrative Medicine provides customized, patient-centered healthcare that combines conventional medicine with proven complementary techniques to motivate and assist clients to optimize their health. To register for workshops or to learn more, visit dhwprograms.dukehealth.org
For more information about