The Role of Physiotherapy in Treating Repetitive Strain Injuries Among Typists

Work injury physiotherapy refers to specialized rehabilitation services provided to individuals who have sustained injuries in the workplace. Work injury physiotherapy in Edmonton focuses on the assessment, treatment, and prevention of work-related injuries, aiming to facilitate the individual’s recovery and safe return to work. The goal is to optimize the individual’s physical function, reduce pain and discomfort, and promote a timely and sustainable return to work while minimizing the risk of re-injury.

What is RSI?

Repetitive strain injuries (RSIs) are conditions resulting from prolonged repetitive movements, forceful exertions, vibrations, or awkward postures, causing strain and damage to muscles, tendons, nerves, and other soft tissues. Examples encompass carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, and bursitis.

Repetitive Strain Injuries: How Physiotherapy Helps

Work injury physiotherapy in Edmonton plays a crucial role in treating repetitive strain injuries (RSIs) among typists by addressing both the symptoms and underlying causes of these injuries. Here’s how work injury physiotherapy helps in treating RSIs among typists:

Pain Management: 

Physiotherapists employ various techniques like manual therapy, soft tissue mobilization, and modalities like heat or cold therapy to alleviate pain and minimize inflammation in the affected muscles and tendons. Here are some of the techniques:

Manual Therapy: 

This involves hands-on techniques performed by a physiotherapist, which uses techniques to manipulate soft tissues, like muscles and tendons, to enhance mobility, minimize muscle tension, and alleviate pain. Manual therapy techniques commonly used for treating RSIs among typists may include:


Soft tissue manipulation techniques, such as effleurage, petrissage, and friction massage, help increase blood flow, reduce muscle tightness, and promote relaxation.

Myofascial Release: 

Continuous gentle pressure is applied to the myofascial tissues to release adhesions and improve tissue mobility.

Soft Tissue Mobilization: 

Physiotherapists may use various soft tissue mobilization techniques to target specific muscles and tendons affected by RSIs. These techniques help break down scar tissue, improve tissue flexibility, and reduce muscle tension. Soft tissue mobilization techniques commonly used for typists may include:

Active Release Technique (ART): 

This technique involves the application of specific movements and pressure to the affected soft tissues to break down adhesions and improve mobility.

Muscle Strengthening and Stretching: 

Physiotherapists design customized exercise programs to strengthen weak muscles and stretch tight muscles associated with repetitive typing movements. These exercises aim to improve muscle balance, flexibility, and endurance, reducing strain on the affected areas. Here are some muscle strengthening and stretching exercises commonly used for treating RSIs among typists:

Wrist Flexor and Extensor Strengthening:

Wrist Flexion and Extension Exercises: 

Typists can perform wrist flexion exercises by holding a lightweight (such as a dumbbell or water bottle) in their hand with their palms facing up and lifting the weight towards the ceiling. For wrist extension exercises, they can hold the weight with their palms facing down and lift the weight toward the ceiling.

Wrist Curls: 

Typists can perform wrist curls by holding a lightweight in their hand with the palm facing up, then curling the wrist upwards towards the body and slowly lowering it back down.

Finger and Thumb Strengthening:

Finger Extension with Rubber Band: 

Typists can place a rubber band around their fingers and thumb, then open their hand against the resistance of the band, strengthening the muscles responsible for finger extension.

Forearm Strengthening:

Forearm Pronation and Supination: 

Typists can Hold the object in their hand with the elbow bent to form a 90-degree angle, then rotate the forearm to turn the palm up (supination) and then down (pronation).

Neck and Shoulder Stretching:

Neck Side Stretch: 

Typists can gently Tilt the head towards one shoulder until a stretching sensation is felt along the side of the neck, then hold for 15-30 seconds before repeating on the other side.

Shoulder Rolls: 

Typists can roll their shoulders backwards in a circular motion, then forwards, to relieve tension and stretch the muscles located in the shoulders and upper back.

Ergonomic Assessment and Modification: 

Work injury physiotherapists conduct ergonomic assessments of the typist’s workstation to identify factors contributing to the development or exacerbation of RSIs. They provide recommendations for optimizing ergonomics, such as adjusting the chair and desk height, modifying keyboard and mouse placement, and incorporating ergonomic accessories like wrist supports or ergonomic keyboards. Here are some common ergonomic assessments and modifications used for this purpose:

Chair and Desk Adjustment:

Physiotherapists recommend adjusting the height and positioning of the typist’s chair and desk to promote neutral postures and reduce strain on the muscles and joints. This may involve adjusting the chair height so that the feet are flat on the floor and the knees are at hip level, as well as ensuring that the desk height allows for comfortable typing and wrist alignment.

Posture Correction: 

Physiotherapists educate typists on proper posture and body mechanics to minimize repetitive strain on the wrist and joints while typing. They provide guidance on maintaining neutral spine alignment, positioning the wrists and hands correctly, and taking regular breaks to prevent fatigue and discomfort. Here are some common posture correction techniques used for treating RSIs among typists:

Maintaining Neutral Spine Alignment:

Physiotherapists educate typists on the importance of maintaining a neutral spine alignment while sitting at their workstations.

Typists are encouraged to sit up straight with their shoulders relaxed and the natural curves of the spine (cervical, thoracic, and lumbar) supported by the chair’s backrest.

Correcting Shoulder Position:

Typists are advised to keep their shoulders relaxed and in a neutral position, avoiding hunching or rounding of the shoulders.

Physiotherapists may recommend gentle shoulder blade squeezes or shoulder rolls to encourage proper shoulder alignment and minimize tension in the upper back and shoulders.

Revitalizing The Joints:

Work injury physiotherapy in Edmonton plays a crucial role in the prevention, assessment, treatment, and rehabilitation of individuals suffering from work-related injuries, including repetitive strain injuries (RSIs) among typists. Family Physiotherapy in Edmonton not only facilitates recovery from work-related injuries but also promotes long-term health and well-being, allowing typists to thrive in their professional endeavours with confidence and resilience. 

Keywords: repetitive strain injuries, repetitive strain in wrist, work injury physiotherapy Edmonton, work injury physiotherapy, Family Physiotherapy


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *