- Are these exercises safe?
No, maybe not. For details see the Warning page.
- My fingers make clicking and popping noises - is this good?
Yes. Clicking noises occur when the joint surfaces slide
suddenly over one another.
If your joints click then clicking them is theraputic - and
will often produce the sensation of relief.
- Doesn't clicking your joints give you arthritis?
No - that is a myth.
If you have arthritis then your
joints will probably click.
However the association is not causal in both directions.
There is a study:
[Joint cracking and popping: understanding noises that accompany articular release] -
which reports that: "Repeated performance of articular release may decrease the occurrence of arthritis" -
so "poping" your joints may actually decrease arthritic problems.
- Ouch! This is painful. Should I carry on?
That depends. If you're a beginner, then by all means stop.
However giving up completely is not recommended.
Stretching is often painful. However the pain should not be seen
as the result of the stretch - but rather as the result of
the lack of stretching that caused the stiffness in the
How much pain to deal with at once is an individual
Pain is an important warning signal - but its message
sometimes needs to be interpreted with intelligence.
After some time you will find your level - and learn to
distinguish between theraputic pain and pain that signals
- How long should I practice each pose for?
That's almost completely up to you. Too short and the effect
will be diminished. Too long and other aspects of your
life will suffer. Find a middle path suitable for you.
- How much of my time should I spend developing my hands?
Again that's almost completely up to you. Too short and the
effect will be diminished. Too long and other aspects of
your life will suffer.
- Will yoga cure my RSI?
It will almost certainly not help. The most probable
outcome is that it will agravate it somewhat.
If you have RSI you need to rest, and do less of the
activity that caused the strain.
However there are things that you can do.
Our RSI page has more details.
- Will yoga cure my arthritis?
I do claim that yoga is strongly preventative in the case of
many sorts of osteoarthritis elsewhere on this site.
However arthritis is - in part - a disorder of cumulative damage -
and by the time you have serious symptoms it is likely that much
damage has been done.
Stretching is recommend as therapy for arthritis by the [Arthritis Foundation] -
and many other such bodies.
I too believe it to be powerfully theraputic in such cases.
However there are some cautions and provisos that need to be made.
If you have many calcium spurs, then stretching exercises
are likely to be painful - and indeed dangerous.
Go slowly - but not so slowly that you are
deteriorating faster than you improve.
Stretching is - potentially - a fantastic therapy for arthritis -
provided things are not left too long.
However it is not a path without difficulties. Go carefully.
- Is this going to give me "swan neck finger deformity"?
No. Properly stretched fingers look great.
If you're concerned about over-stretching delicate joints
then do more strengthening exercises.
- How come you never mention toes?
Stretching your feet is also important.
However, this is a site about hands and fingers.
Keen studsents can try adapting the poses to their feet