Over the past three weeks, we’ve discussed why neutral spine is important, as well as neutral neck. Today we’re going to bring the series to a close, discussing the importance of keeping a neutral wrist.
While this one may not be as intuitive as the other two, it’s nonetheless important. Watch most people perform any pressing exercise, and you’ll see their wrist getting dominated by the barbell or kettlebell.
At best, it’s an energy leak, reducing their strength, power and performance.
At worst, it’s going to land them on the disabled list.
Below is a quick video on how I coach and cue someone into a neutral wrist alignment:
Once again, here are the key take home points:
- When doing any kind of pressing, try to get the handle of the kettlebell, or the barbell in close to the thumb (versus towards the fingers). This reduces the lever arm and makes it easier to keep the wrist in neutral.
- When doing any overhead or pressing work with a kettlebell (arm bar, Turkish get-up, overhead press, windmill, etc.) keep the wrist in neutral. If you can’t “spear” the bell and have your fingers straight up and down, you’re not doing it correctly.
- When performing any barbell bench pressing, cue yourself to keep the knuckles pointed upwards throughout, but especially as you get close to your chest.
This simple cue can make a profound difference, not only in your strength and performance, but your wrist health as well.