Wrist Proprioception Ideas for Hand Therapy

Wrist Proprioception Intervention Ideas: By Ammie Ingwaldson

Lack of wrist proprioception exercises can affect clients in the hand therapy setting with neurological and musculoskeletal conditions. Proprioception limitations are found in common conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome, distal radius fracture, and CRPS (Valdes, Naughton & Algar, 2014). Proprioception is necessary during daily tasks to provide joint control and stability through conscious and unconscious effort (Hagert, 2010). The following intervention ideas can be used to facilitate wrist proprioception. These products are not affiliated with Hand Therapy Partners, links to outside vendors are provided below. These products can be used for various hand proprioception exercises.

Ball in a Cup

Place small rubber or metal balls cup that can be held comfortably in one hand. The goal of the activity is to roll the balls clockwise and counter clockwise by just moving the wrist. The client’s elbow should be stabilized to isolate the wrist (Valdes, Naughton & Algar, 2014).

Powerball

wrist proprioception exercises

The Powerball is a gyroscope that exerts multidirectional inertia for the muscles of the wrist joint (Hagert, 2010). The ball is wound within the device to start, then the patient must use the tactile feedback from the ball to maintain and increase the speed of the inner ball. The Powerball can also be useful for building muscle endurance for the wrist and hand.

Wooden disk stacker

wrist proprioception exercises

This activity is a favorite at our clinic. This seemingly simple toy provides patients with the challenge of stacking wooden disks with slight wrist motions and sustained grasp on the handle.

Smart phone applications

Smartphone applications, such as Labyrinth, require wrist proprioception and coordinated response from the patient (Algar, Valdes, 2014). The applications can be used to facilitate active wrist movement, proprioception, and wrist range of motion.

Balance exercise on ball

wrist proprioception exercises

This activity requires slow and controlled responses of the patient to balance with both hands on a ball. The sustained balance on the ball requires simultaneous use of the flexors and extensors of the wrist while weight bearing through the upper extremities (Hagert, 2010).

References

Algar, L., & Valdes, K. (2014). Using smartphone applications as hand therapy interventions. Journal of Hand Therapy27(3), 254-257. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jht.2013.12.009

Hagert, E. (2010). Proprioception of the wrist joint: a review of current concepts and possible implications on the rehabilitation of the wrist. Journal of Hand Therapy23(1), 2-17. doi:10.1016/j.jht.2009.09.008

Valdes, K., Naughton, N., & Algar, L. (2014). Sensorimotor interventions and assessments for the hand and wrist: a scoping review. Journal of Hand Therapy27(4), 272-286. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jht.2014.07.002

Product links

Powerball

https://powerballs.com/shop/powerball-280-autostart-classic

Wooden disk stacker

https://www.amazon.com/True-Balance-Mini-Bamboo/dp/B07SH1K5ZY/ref=pd_sbs_21_img_2/140-4698552-2948747?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B07SH1K5ZY&pd_rd_r=ade65fd0-6ceb-401b-b059-0b993806796e&pd_rd_w=nhyoa&pd_rd_wg=E9uyf&pf_rd_p=5cfcfe89-300f-47d2-b1ad-a4e27203a02a&pf_rd_r=YVXT1X80MKBTZM5WD22P&psc=1&refRID=YVXT1X80MKBTZM5WD22P

Smart phone applications

https://apps.apple.com/us/app/labyrinth/id284571899

4 Comments

  1. Debbie Daugherty on December 16, 2019 at 6:02 am

    What position is the pt in for tha balance on a ball exercise?

    Love these ideas! Thanks

    Debbie

    • Miranda Materi on December 22, 2019 at 8:53 am

      You can grade the activity.
      The easiest being the ball on a table
      second would be on the wall
      and 3rd would be on the floor with the patient prone

  2. Emilia on December 16, 2019 at 1:57 pm

    good afternoon!

    where can I buy these two equipments to deliver in Brazil.

    thanks!

    Emília Póvoas

    • Miranda Materi on December 22, 2019 at 8:53 am

      amazon

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