Don’t strain your hands (at online bridge)

I’ve learned a lot about strain as a writer.

Years ago, I had an unfortunate do-it-yourself accident – and a sliced-open palm as a result of distracted stupidity. It was the type of wound that required stitches, but I found the thought of having it stitched up at the cost of my typing speed too horrible.

What happened next?

I continued typing, strapping up my hand with salted bandages. At the time, I had a stretch of 10, 000 words to type, and was determined to finish it.

If there’s a lesson here for bridge players, it’s this: Avoid strain in your hands (and possibly, don’t DIY).

I played bridge during this time, but badly. It was a slight distraction to clean fresh blood off the keyboard between games – and I wouldn’t recommend it for anyone out there.

What if you don’t have an injury right now? You should still pay attention to this post.

Online bridge has its injuries, and strain is a possible consequence for anyone who uses a PC or smart device often.

Minor injuries become larger ones with enough strain. Larger injuries have the potential to become enormous when subjected to serious strain. It’s good advice to avoid strain or stress on the body in any form, even when you suspect that you’re healthy and fine.

Play online bridge on a regular basis? Here’s how to avoid straining your hands.

Stretching applies to the hands, too.

Stretching does a lot for the body, but also applies to the extremities. Online bridge isn’t a huge bodily workout, but it has the potential to strain the joints.

Never forget that your hands require just as much exercise as the rest of you.

Without stretching, you could make conditions like arthritis worse. Repetitive strain injuries are also called this for a reason: Stretching often can help to reduce pain and swelling.

The application of warm or cold water can also help to reduce inflammation when you notice it flaring up.

Rest your hands comfortably.

What do you do with your hands when you’re looking at the screen instead of playing bridge? Pay attention to your posture, and where you place your hands, shoulders, and legs.

If your hands aren’t resting in the most comfortable position, expect your wrists, elbows, shoulders, or neck to start hurting next.

Using the right keyboard (or an accompanying wrist-rest) is a big help. Tablet and smartphone players should consider investing in a device stand. Again, it helps for associated strain before it has a chance to take hold.

Do you have any added tips for bridge players that could help them preserve their hands?