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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug. 10, 2008
    Location
    Kinston, NC
    Posts
    1,246

    Default Riding with Arthritis in Right Hand

    I got my stitches out today from my carpal tunnel surgery. The orthopedist told me that the remainder of the swelling, stiffness and pain in my fingers is due to arthritis. My hand has been in a brace for ten days, so there is some loss of range of motion, but still, I can not close my fingers into a gentle fist, with the fingertips just touching my palm. Left hand yes, right hand no.

    Anyone got any suggestions?

    I have a new horse to share with my granddaughter, a ten year old Arabian X QH cross gelding I would like to start riding, and to show locally in Training Level later this fall. At this point I don't know if I can even hold a lead rope....

    Will I make it a lot worse if I ride, or will that help keep up strencth and flexibility? I do so want to ride.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul. 14, 2003
    Location
    MA
    Posts
    6,687

    Default

    Have you tried bionic gloves?

    http://www.bionicgloves.com/shop/?cat=31

    I have a pair and I love them.

    If your doctor has not put any restrictions on your activity, then I would start to ride as soon as possible. Are you seeing a physical therapist? That should get you started to get the strength and flexibility back. Muscle strength helps arthritis, so the stronger you can make your hand the better. Maybe try squeezing an exercise ball several times during the day?
    "Against stupidity the gods themselves contend in vain" ~Friedrich Schiller



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov. 9, 2005
    Location
    uk
    Posts
    15,296

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Eclectic Horseman View Post
    Have you tried bionic gloves?

    http://www.bionicgloves.com/shop/?cat=31

    I have a pair and I love them.

    If your doctor has not put any restrictions on your activity, then I would start to ride as soon as possible. Are you seeing a physical therapist? That should get you started to get the strength and flexibility back. Muscle strength helps arthritis, so the stronger you can make your hand the better. Maybe try squeezing an exercise ball several times during the day?
    i have problesm with my hands i use finger gloves so the tips arnt in the wya when doing things but my hands are kept warm you can get them in thermal, and gosh whats that meterial wet suits are made off -- those are well good as they keep the hands warm but is very supportive hasnt let me down and i have had to deal with both hands like it since i was 5yrs old



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan. 21, 2008
    Location
    Dexter, MI
    Posts
    1,225

    Default

    I had CP surgery a few years ago and started out as stiff as you're describing. I didn't feel comfortable getting back on a horse until I was SURE I had enough strength and comfort in the surgery hand to handle an emergency in the saddle. I just didn't feel safe. I had rehab and did my exercises religiously, and have now healed better than ever. The rehab exercises actually helped the arthritis! Good luck, don't push it, and remember, a hot cup of coffee or tea to wrap your hand around is a wonderful treat at the end of the day!
    "Imma snap youuuu! - with a shout out to Wildlifer



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep. 21, 2005
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    490

    Default

    I love these because they are very soft, light weight and easy to hold to.
    http://www.sportack.com/cms/index.cf...2/96334/96603/



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul. 14, 2003
    Location
    MA
    Posts
    6,687

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by goeslikestink View Post
    iand gosh whats that meterial wet suits are made off -- those are well good as they keep the hands warm
    Neoprene?
    "Against stupidity the gods themselves contend in vain" ~Friedrich Schiller



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar. 17, 2009
    Location
    New England
    Posts
    278

    Default

    I have RA, the only thing that helps me with the swelling, loss of range of motion and pain is riding and barn chores. Go for it, just don't over do it... Which, of course, is a very fine line.
    If you destroy the land, you destroy the animals;
    if you destroy the animals, you destroy the people.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar. 13, 2006
    Posts
    308

    Talking

    Hi there
    I have chronic arthritis in both hands and wrists, my left hand is unable to close. I use stubben rubber reins, they are thicker and softer, easier to hold and prevent slipping. I use Ariat winter gloves (all year), they are a little padded and again, non slip.

    I drug when it is really bad, Aleve. Fortunately, my thumbs are fine, so I stop the rein from slipping with my thumb to forefinger. I do not have much (any) sponging ability in the left hand, so have to use a little wrist movement, if I need to soften the left rein.

    You just adapt. I find the double difficult and can not hold the whip in my left hand, in the double. Just too much stuff, end up dropping it.

    Now the good news! It teaches you that you absolutely do not need to be busy with the hands!! And, you have zero tolerance for a horse hanging on the rein!!! So, it really makes you be 100% consistent with keeping your horse on his rear end and off the forehand!! The opposite just hurts too much!

    Good luck, you will be fine.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov. 1, 1999
    Location
    Someplace Wet
    Posts
    9,005

    Default

    my problem is my left hand ( my dominant hand in the work I do) My carpal tunnel ( done years ago with "stone knives and bear skins") is in my right.

    I was please to find that Nutramax Labs Cosamine DS does well for me.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug. 10, 2008
    Location
    Kinston, NC
    Posts
    1,246

    Default

    I have a plan of sorts....

    gloves that support/protect
    range of motion stretches - I have a friend who is a PT and she coached me
    squeezing a ball or sponge to make fingers stronger
    massage
    heat - I have a parafin dip
    NASIDs
    meds - glucosamine and chondroitin
    prayer
    common sense about progress

    And last but not least - swearing!



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