Training in the gym places a huge burden on the body. It affects the work and condition of the internal organs of man, as well as the entire movement apparatus. Carpal tunnel syndrome is an increasingly common neurological disorder in exercising people. However, both those who perform office work and bodybuilders are exposed to problems with maintaining the grip strength. Where does the carpal tunnel syndrome come from? What is the effect on gym training? What to do to protect yourself from this condition?
What is carpal tunnel syndrome?
Carpal tunnel syndrome is the most common compression neuropathy. What does it mean? It is pain caused by excessive and prolonged compression of the medial nerve, which lies in the wrist canal.
The problem arises due to the narrowing of its light, which is the result of inflammation of the nerve itself or the surrounding tissues.
Pressure on the nerve is the cause of its reduced nutrition and the prevention of the free flow of blood. As a result, there is even more swelling and the appearance of pain.
Interestingly – leaving your hands out of bed after waking up at night is able to relieve pain.
The causes of carpal tunnel syndrome are quite extensive and can accumulate. The nerve pressure affects
- long-lasting monotonous movements,
- using vibrating devices at work,
- long-term arrangement of the wrists in the incorrect position (on the mouse or computer keyboard),
- pond overload,
- dislocations and other injuries,
- incorrect grip of the neck during training,
- systemic diseases, e.g. rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes; hormonal changes.
The disease is popular among people who focus on strength disciplines, perform monotonous physical work, as well as office workers. Its incidence is up to 10% of the female population and about 5% of men.
Symptoms of the carpal tunnel syndrome are initially mild, which over time increasingly obstruct the daily functioning. During the development of the disease occurs
- wrist pain while performing activities in his flexion,
- numbness and tingling sensation especially in the ring, middle and index fingers.
Over time, ailments appear not only at night but also during everyday activities. The development of carpal tunnel syndrome is associated with a gradual loss of feeling, a weakened grip, or even the inability to shake hands.
Diagnosis of carpal tunnel syndrome is based on two tests.
Phalen test – the test consists in supporting the elbows on the table top and free hanging them. If a spasm and numbness occurs within a minute, this is a reason to make a diagnosis.
Tinel test – during tapping of the joint around the medial nerve, both numbness and excessive, unpleasant sensations can occur. The test is described as positive and forms the basis for the diagnosis of the disease.
X-ray pictures are also used to diagnose carpal tunnel, and rarely, tests determining the ENG nerve conduction capacity.
Carpal tunnel syndrome – treatment
The methods of treating the carpal tunnel depend on the progress that the disease has made. In the initial phase, exercises for carpal tunnel syndrome may be sufficient. These include stretching exercises designed to tighten individual areas
- the wrists with straight fingers up and down are bent at the extended straight hands;
- a similar exercise is performed with clenched fists;
The movements should be performed with both straight and bent hands in the elbow joint. How else can you manage? The home treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome takes place with the assumption of night orthotics. A good method is also the use of a taping technique around the joints. Its aim is to keep them in a neutral position and allow the widest possible opening of the canal in which the nerve lies. However, if the exercises do not bring results, it is necessary to use corticosteroid injections as well as to perform a surgical procedure.
Carpal tunnel syndrome and gym training
There is an increased risk of carpal tunnel syndrome among strength trainers. Particularly invasive may be the exercises in which a narrow grip is used, for example, pressing the bar narrowly. However, even the best technique may not be able to protect us from a condition caused by regular overloading of the joints. Therefore, it is a good idea to prophylactically apply the exercises to the carpal tunnel syndrome. It should focus on the prevention of the disease, because its occurrence will almost eliminate the practitioner from training, which requires a strong grip.