Drawing and hands health

A board designated for discussion of personal issues.
Forum rules
Due to the often sensitive nature of the discussions occurring in Life Issues, we ask that you be particularly considerate and respectful toward posters here. Violation of this request will be considered a violation of the rules.

Drawing and hands health

Postby Zin Trollborn » July 11th, 2018, 7:37 am

Hey there!

So I was wondering how other people manage their health while drawing and other artsy stuff. I mean.... hands are important during those hobbies, how do you manage to keep them safe?
I suffer from "carpal tunnel syndrome" (not sure its called like that in english, but you know the pain when you do the same movement every days) and I stretch every morning but when I'm working on my comic, there's always a moment my arm is going to say "NOPE" and I won't be able to use it for a long moment. You can imagine all the frustration with all the things that run in my head and that are only asking to be drawn.

I know there's no miracle way to get rid of this, but if people have small tricks to share, I'll be more than thankful.
Just a comic banner down here.
Spoiler! :
Image
User avatar
Zin Trollborn
 
Posts: 16
Joined: May 4th, 2018, 2:26 am

Re: Drawing and hands health

Postby Valigarmander » July 11th, 2018, 8:48 am

I've been dealing with pain in my drawing hand lately, and it's forced me to start taking better care of myself. For me the three most helpful things have been stretching before drawing (there are a variety of stretches you can do, but you'll want to make sure you get your fingers, wrists and arms as they're the body parts most involved in drawing), ergonomics (making sure my drawing area is comfortable and minimizes strain on any part of my body, including things like sitting in a chair with good back support, and making sure my forearm is supported rather than hanging over the desk/drafting table while I'm drawing), and taking breaks (every 30-60 minutes minimum; stopping and stretching for even just a minute or two really helps).

This applies for things other than drawing. My job has me doing a lot of lifting and repetitive motions that put strain on my fingers, wrists and arms, so I have to be mindful of that as well and stretch/give my hands a rest when I get the chance.
Image
User avatar
Valigarmander
 
Posts: 17
Joined: January 10th, 2007, 5:39 pm

Re: Drawing and hands health

Postby Admin » July 11th, 2018, 9:41 am

I find when it comes to work/stress related health issues, the best thing to do is take a break for a couple of weeks. That can be really hard if you have responsibilities and obligations connected to your work, but if it's at all possible for you to take that kind of break and replace it with healthy physical activity, I think that would be a good way to let the problem "cool off" before you get back into it.
User avatar
Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1442
Joined: August 17th, 2005, 11:10 pm

Re: Drawing and hands health

Postby mitchellbravo » July 11th, 2018, 12:37 pm

Valigarmander wrote:ergonomics (making sure my drawing area is comfortable and minimizes strain on any part of my body, including things like sitting in a chair with good back support, and making sure my forearm is supported rather than hanging over the desk/drafting table while I'm drawing)

This is a big one for me. Experiment with different positions. I'm personally fine during drawing and haven't drawn for a long enough time to get a hand cramp in years (not sure if that's good or sad) but I can bust up my wrists easily if my computer is poorly positioned. In college one year I had a setup where my laptop, when open, didn't fit under the shelf that went over my dorm desk, so I had to put it on the front of the desk and off to the side kind of at an angle. This would leave me with one hand/wrist supported properly by the desk and the other one hanging down, leading to some tendon pain that luckily went away after a few days and a change to the workspace setup.
oly: we draw stories about imaginary people
Image
Do not feet infants to honey under one year of age.
me: Posh, Baby, Sporty, and Scary Ham
robybang: Together they're Spiced Ham
User avatar
mitchellbravo
 
Posts: 6344
Joined: October 11th, 2010, 1:31 pm
Location: too tired

Re: Drawing and hands health

Postby kayotics » July 11th, 2018, 1:23 pm

I've started looking into more ways to help my hands and keep them in good health. I'd love to avoid carpal tunnel, so I've started doing mild workouts, just in my free time. I've also started stretching more, just all over.

I need to do better, but I've been slowly working myself up to get strength built in my arms and wrists. I'll take a few moments to stretch my wrist, even when I'm not drawing. I do a lot of typing and computer work for my day job, so I've been trying to be better about keeping a better posture for both my wrists and back/shoulders. Getting up and walking around every 20 minutes or so is just good for you, but it also gives you a break.
Image
User avatar
kayotics
 
Posts: 157
Joined: January 29th, 2018, 9:57 pm

Re: Drawing and hands health

Postby Zin Trollborn » July 12th, 2018, 3:29 am

I must admit I can't really take care of the ergonomics.... thing is... Short people problem :lol:
Like my legs being too short to touch the ground or my arms making stupid efforts to reach my tablet. That's a good reminder tho, and I'll probably work to find stuff to pimp my desk and chair to be comfortable.

I actually stopped to draw for years (I had those hands issues before), and got back in drawings since about 3 months. And the same pain is now back. But I guess I should slow down the drawings and take more breaks and do other things? Oh how much I hate the feeling of running as fast as a snail when I'm working on something! >_<
Just a comic banner down here.
Spoiler! :
Image
User avatar
Zin Trollborn
 
Posts: 16
Joined: May 4th, 2018, 2:26 am

Re: Drawing and hands health

Postby eishiya » July 12th, 2018, 8:21 am

Zin Trollborn wrote:I must admit I can't really take care of the ergonomics.... thing is... Short people problem :lol:
Like my legs being too short to touch the ground or my arms making stupid efforts to reach my tablet. That's a good reminder tho, and I'll probably work to find stuff to pimp my desk and chair to be comfortable.

I actually stopped to draw for years (I had those hands issues before), and got back in drawings since about 3 months. And the same pain is now back. But I guess I should slow down the drawings and take more breaks and do other things? Oh how much I hate the feeling of running as fast as a snail when I'm working on something! >_<

Sounds like you really need to take care of your ergonomics D8 You could, for example, find a completely different location or pose to draw in. You would work standing up, or work sitting in a big chair with your tablet in your lap (possibly using a pillow to lift it higher), etc. You should definitely never need to strain to reach your working space, no amount of stretches can counteract that.
Image
User avatar
eishiya
 
Posts: 9398
Joined: December 5th, 2009, 11:17 am

Re: Drawing and hands health

Postby Oly-RRR » July 12th, 2018, 9:56 pm

Zin Trollborn wrote:Like my legs being too short to touch the ground or my arms making stupid efforts to reach my tablet. That's a good reminder tho, and I'll probably work to find stuff to pimp my desk and chair to be comfortable.

You could get some kind of footrest as well! I'm short too and my desk is undersized even for me (that's an oversight but uh... eventually I'll have a better desk maybe) but my chair has been clearly made for tall people and there's a sort of tiltable footrest that evens it out (not sure if Ikea doesn't know short people exist or they just want to make more money by making a big chair and then selling an addition to it). But yeah, either that or a different location/pose.
Image
Image
You can't compare shooting a stag with lasers to putting on women's clothing!!! - Liz Carr on Ouch!
You know you're overweight when your stab-vest starts riding up and looking a bit like a crop-top... - Alfie Moore
User avatar
Oly-RRR
 
Posts: 1887
Joined: August 20th, 2012, 6:36 pm
Location: here for the music

Re: Drawing and hands health

Postby Zin Trollborn » July 17th, 2018, 9:55 am

Totally going to get a footrest when I'll be able to. For the moment I just put some big cushions for my feet (I tried cardboard boxes and they didn't like it xD) and I'm definitely planning to customise my desk.

By the way, many thanks for your comments guys! it's always helpful to realise what you have to improve and change.
Just a comic banner down here.
Spoiler! :
Image
User avatar
Zin Trollborn
 
Posts: 16
Joined: May 4th, 2018, 2:26 am


Return to Life Issues

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests