We are always looking for ways of the intrinsic hand strengthening. It is easy to overlook the importance of these small but mighty muscles. They are essential to performing functional grasps patterns. They can become weak in a short period of time due to their small size.
So, How does intrinsic strengthening work?!
The Basics – We typically start with a large 5-pound blob of yellow or tan putty because this is the easiest and softest.
“Functional grasp patterns require the use of the intrinsics.”
Special Rules – To keep the patient from cheating and meet the task’s purpose, we have a few special rules.
- Make sure the patient’s shoulder is relaxed! We do not want to create shoulder problems!
- Check to make sure there is no compensation of the long flexors and extensors.
- The most important part of these exercises is TECHNIQUE
Make it fit – This task is scalable and can be adjusted by using different putties. Also, it can be modified by how deep you dig the putty tools into the putty.
Time to get to work!
Using the small cylinder knob, place it between digits 2 and 3. While holding the knob tight between the digits, turn the knob in the putty. Repeat the same step above and rotate the knob to between digits 3 and 4 and then digits 4 and 5.
Next, push the T end of the putty tool into the putty. Hold the hand in the intrinsic plus position and practice turning the knob.
Lastly, Intrinsic Pull. Place one side of the key tool into the putty, hold the tool between any two digits and pull through putty.
Warning – Make sure the patient removes their watch or bracelet, along with making sure their phones do not get near the putty. The putty tends to stick to rubbery surfaces and can be very difficult to remove.
If you don’t have Puttycise tools, you can make your own out of scrap splinting material.
More To Read
By Taylor Landholm Chen, Y., Yu, Y., Lin, X., Han, Z., Feng, Z., Hua, X., Chen, D., Xu, X., Zhang, Y., & Wang, G. (2020). Intelligent Rehabilitation Assistance Tools for Distal Radius Fracture: A Systematic Review Based on Literatures and Mobile Application Stores. Computational and Mathematical Methods in Medicine, 2020, 7613569. https://doi-org.methodistlibrary.idm.oclc.org/10.1155/2020/7613569 The Skinny The…Read More
Article Review: Relative Motion for Extensor Tendon Repair zone V-VI? Is a night-time resting hand orthosis beneficial?
Hirth, M. J., Hunt, I., Briody, K., Milner, Z., Sleep, K., Chu, A., Donovan, E. & O’Brien, L. (2021). Comparison of two relative motion extension orthotic programs following surgical repair of finger extensor tendons in zones V-VI: A randomized equivalence trial. Journal of Hand Therapy-to be published. The Skinny: Following a zone V-VI tendon repair,…Read More
Brachial Plexopathy Case Example in Hand Therapy (plexopathy examples) One of the recent cases we have seen is a 13-year old with a brachial plexus injury. We are seeing the patient post-surgery for tendon transfers to increase functional use of his left upper extremity (LUE). Before the surgery, he could not extend the wrist and…Read More
Sign-up to Get Updates Straight to Your Inbox!
Sign up with us and we will send you regular blog posts on everything hand therapy, notices every time we upload new videos and tutorials, along with handout, protocols, and other useful information.