I see a lot of women who have a problem with wrist range of motion, even in positions which place less stress on the wrists (quadruped, for example).
As a MELT instructor, I have a different suggestion: the MELT Hand Treatment works on the connective tissue in the hands and arms, and I see increased range of motion as a result of doing it regularly. You may not be familiar with it, and I am happy to talk to you about this offline.
Hope this helps.
I would modify the exercise before I deleted it. The push up is such a staple in human movement I wouldn’t want to get rid of it completely. Try having them grip dumbells while they do them so their wrists straighten out more, or elevate their torso on a half/squat/full rack and barbell. Squats, push ups, pull ups, and rows are the few exercises I try to maintain with every client because of their real world functional value.
You present a good question because I know as trainers we run into this frequently. In my experience, most of the time it is simply lack of strength and stretch in the wrist and forearms and there’s excellent “how-to” advice here in how to address that. Some clients are relieved simply by rolling the end of their mat up under the lower palm of the hands (or use small folded towels) – giving a little lift and, therewith, shifting some of the load off the wrists. I also cue the client to push the body’s weight around and through the flexed wrist, out the whole of the palm and out the fingers, not allowing the body’s weight to stop dead at the wrist (helps in doing planks too). Many times being conscious of this also helps.So, if all is medically sound, as so aptly pointed out in this forum, then we’ll focus on that area to build it up and progress from there. Especially women, Susan, I think we don’t even think about that area much, till it’s a problem, not like the men do. I love push-ups and I like to see my clients able to do them if at all possible. They like it too. I hope this helps working it out!
Hi Susan. If doing push-ups is really important to your clients or their workouts, I would first, try to determine the source/cause of their pain by having them see their physician. If all is well and they are cleared to continue to put this type of stress on the wrist joint, you may try having them ‘progress’ to a full push-up by having them start with wall push-ups, which in my opinion puts a little less stress on the wrists, and then as they build up their strength (and confidence) progress them to the floor (knee push-ups) and ultimately to the full-body version.
I hope that this helps.