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Covid 19 Psychological Support: Mindful Movement: The Hands

Support for HSE staff during the Covid 19 emergency

Mindful Movement - The Hands

Involves: Sitting down and stretching the hands

Time it takes: Approx. 2 minutes and 30 seconds

Audience:  Busy colleagues who are spending a lot of time at a keyboard

Preparation: Practice reading the exercise once or twice through

What people say about this exercise: Colleagues found it useful & relaxing

This is a mindful movement practice to help stretch out the hands and fingers. Since many of us are spending a lot of time at a keyboard it is only fair to give our hands a break.

  1. When you’re ready sit comfortably and take an upright and dignified posture
  2. Take a deep breath in and out
  3. To start gently lift your right hand and allow your wrist to go limp.
  4. Gently shake the wrist around and then let your hand hang down vertically, its weight heavy
  5. Bring your attention to your fingers. Ignore the thumb for now. Begin moving one finger at time, as if the fingers are doing a mini Mexican wave…folding them into the palm and extending them out again. Try this going slowly and going fast experimenting with the difference.
  6. Then stretch your thumb out to its full length and fold it in again…repeat this a few times
  7. Now bring your attention back to the wrist, begin rotating the wrist in one direction and then in the other…getting as full an extension as you can, but always being wise to the limitations of your body.
  8. Repeat this sequence with your left hand.
  9. First lift your left hand and let your wrist go limp. Then gently shake the wrist around and flap forward and back. Let the hand hang vertically feeling the weight of your hand.
  10. Brining your attention to the fingers, move each finger in and out one by one.
  11. Then stretch your thumb out to its full potential and fold it back in…repeat this a few times before bringing your attention back to the wrist. Rotate the wrist in one direction and then in the other direction. Extend the wrist without any strain.
  12. Clasp both hands together with your fingers overlapping
  13. Take one deep breath in and out. The practice will now end.

National Health Library & Knowledge Service. Health Service Executive. Dr. Steevens' Hospital, Dublin 8. Tel: 01-6352555/8. Email: hselibrary@hse.ie

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