Wrist mobility in CrossFit is crucial to complete functional movements like front squats and cleans. You never realize how much you actually use your wrists until you find yourself in the front rack position and it feels like your wrists are going to snap right off your arms. This is due to poor wrist mobility. The majority can get through life just fine without having an exceptional wrist range of motion since they won’t be smashing heavyweight anytime soon. But for you, wrist mobility is a crucial factor, in movement progression and form. And if you’re in pain during your front rack position, chances are your form and performance won’t be as good as it could be. Let’s learn a few ways to improve wrist mobility so you can workout in less pain.
Wrist Mobility Exercises
Wrist Mobility Exercises: 1. Wrist Rotations
Wrist rotations are a great way to help your range of motion to improve wrist mobility. Simply interlace your fingers and rotate your wrists in every possible direction a few times per day. If you find that your wrists are more tender in some positions as opposed to others hold them in that position for a few seconds and repeat.
Wrist Mobility Exercises: 2. Static Holds
Besides being a bit uncomfortable static holds are a simple way to improve wrist mobility. Extend your wrists into flexion (backward) and extension (Forward) and hold for 20-30 seconds in each direction.
Wrist Mobility Exercises: 3. Planche Push Up Position
In the planche push-up position, your elbows are fully extended. Turn your hands inwards pointing towards your toes and positioned under your torso as opposed to in front of you. From here you want to shift your body forward and hold your weight towards the front of your body. Hold here for 20-30 seconds and come back to resting position. Perform this a few times to improve your wrist mobility.
Wrist Mobility Exercises: 4. Front-Rack Position
In conjunction with the above-mentioned movements, get into front-rack position and practice the real thing. Use a PVC pipe and hold front-rack position, rotating your wrists back and forward in and out of position. This will help you establish the range of motion you need to successfully complete a front squat or clean without grimacing in pain.
Wrist Mobility Exercises: 5. Wrist Walks
Place your hands on a wall shoulder width apart with your fingers pointed towars the ceiling. After you place your hands on the wall walk them down the wall as far as you can. Once you reach the lowest point your wrists can bear, turn your hands with your fingers pointed down towards the floor, and walk them back up as far as you can go. Repeat as needed.
Wrist Mobility Exercises: 6. Wrist Wraps/Wrist Sleeves
Wrist wraps and sleeves were created to provide compression support for the wrist, which helps stabilize the wrist joint, and keeps the wrist joint warm and protected from friction. Wrist wraps and sleeves can really help ease wrist pain, especially if you have trouble with the front-rack position. It’s always important however to work on your wrist mobility with the movements mentioned in addition to using wraps during training if needed. We recommend wrist sleeves from Rehband and wraps from TuffWraps or Bear Komplex
Wrist Mobility: 7. Supplements To Improve Wrist Mobility
Recent studies show that Collagen and Krill Oil are both clinically proven to help reduce activity-related joint pain and inflammation in athletes. (1, 2) Collagen contains a very unique amino acid profile, high in glycine, proline, and hydroxyproline, which are hard to find in the modern day diet.
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Additionally, Krill oil is comprised of the Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA and contains a potent antioxidant Astaxanthin which also supports joint health and can help improve mobility.
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The typical American diet is high in Omega-6 but severely lacks in Omega-3s. Therefore, the best way to get an adequate amount of Collagen and Omega-3 into your diet is through supplementation.
How To Improve Wrist Mobility: Takeaway
Wrist mobility is critical in CrossFit. If you want to improve your athletic performance, then taking the time and putting in the effort to improve your range of motion, is vital to your overall success. Incorporating mobility technique and getting the right amount of nutrients in your diet, will help you add more volume to your workouts in less pain.
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ReferencesSuzuki, Yoshio et al. “Krill Oil Improves Mild Knee Joint Pain: A Randomized Control Trial” PloS onevol. 11,10 e0162769. 4 Oct. 2016, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0162769