Being a beginner in the world of jewelry manufacturing, I'm
probably now going through the aches and pains you have already
forgotten about. I attend class one night a week for 4 hours(going
for two months now). But my fingers get so sore!
Like any profession, sports, typing, guitar playing, your hands in
the beginning will take a beating. Over the years I have callouses
on top of callouses which I rather like. In time your hands and
fingers will get stronger. If you have actual skin cracking, the
Orchid archives should provide you with some helpful hints.
For sore fingers and hands Here are some simple excercises you
might try. I got these from David Pimental who does a lot of
raising. Since incorporating these into my daily work routine, I
never had anymore problems.
Stand next to a table and spread your palm and fingers onto the
surface. Your arm should be at 90 degrees. Slowly push your arm
forward keeping your palm on the surface. This stretches out the
muscles in the palm. Hold for a count of 10 secs. Switch off
each hand and do a series of 3, 10 count each.
At the same table, curl your fingers so your back knuckles
touch the counter and roll your wrist forward. This stretches out
the muscles in the back of your hand.
With your arms bent at the elbow, hands up, rotate your palms
in a circular motion. Again for 10 seconds, 3 sets each.
You wouldn’t think of jogging or biking without stretching first.
Metalsmithing is no different. It’s important to keep your hand
and arm muscles relaxed. Stop every 20 minutes or so and do these
excercises. Your hands will get stronger and hurt less if you give
them time to relax in between.
Fly Fish Design
282 Lexington St.
Woburn, MA 01801