I was recently asked by an instagram follower how to improve wrist mobility. Many lifters suffer from inadequate wrist mobility. There can be some underlying factors to why the wrist lost its range of motion (ROM). Injuries and lack of using the wrist though its full ROM is the most common reason for lack of mobility. So first consider your past injuries, hobbies, and workout routines, you may have an old injury that is limiting you from full ROM. Do you use the full ROM that you need? If not, the increased mobility will not stick around for long. Or maybe you need stability some where else, thats gonna be a different blog post.
So lets think about what joints may have an effect/affect on the wrist (yes it can go both ways). The elbow, glenohumeral (shoulder/GH), Scapulothoracic (ST), and Thoracic spine (T/S). Lets go down the list and add the functions to the joints. M=mobile, S=stabile, Wrist= M, elbow= S, GH= M, and ST= S T/S= M, If you're having trouble with increasing mobility, then you may need to look at the other associated joints.
SO back to the wrist, with a mobility band, place the band around the carpel bones. If the band is on the dorsal (back) side of the wrist, pull the hands and fingers into extension. If the band is on the palmar (palm) side of the wrist, flex the hand towards you. Try mobilizing with the fingers opened and closed, hold the mobility position for 30sec to a min. It is possible to be hyper mobile (too much ROM). If you have any pain in the wrist seek a professional before attempting to do this on your own. The stretch should be comfortable enough that you're relaxed and breathing normally, too much stretch will cause you to fight against the stretch. Don't force the joint to become mobile. Work on mobility a little bit at a time and work your way up. Now the most important aspect of increasing mobility in any joint is... making sure you use the ROM every day. Practice adding light pressure in that new range, slowly build strength in the new range. Adding too much load to fast will end in injury.
When it comes to improving mobility or stability, it will always come down to core strength. "Proximal stability for distal mobility" PNF concept. If your core is not stable enough you will not be able to maintain mobility in other joints that are fighting against the mobility drills. So If you are having a difficult time maintaining mobility, first see a professional, make sure that the joint is not compromised, then work on core stability. I'll be writing a post on core stability and what not to do.
Move smarter, move better, move pain free.