Thanks to the rapid development of technology, a cashier’s job on a till is quick. Customers don’t have to wait long and cashiers can tend to the next customer in the queue. However, the repetitive motion of picking up and scanning items can cause painful conditions to develop in the hands and arms. If you’re suffering from cashier wrist pain, here are some exercises you can start using right away to relieve any stress or discomfort.
Why do cashiers suffer from wrist pain?
Due to the nature of their job, cashiers regularly have to do the same repetitive motions: handling items, scanning purchases, operating the till, etc. In any job where employees are required to do the same repeated actions, (like a barista operating a coffee machine) they are at risk of suffering a repetitive strain injury.
Repeated strain in your wrist can trigger symptoms like numbness in your fingertips, painful aches, pins and needles and make it difficult to grip.
Repetitive movements of the hand can cause carpal tunnel syndrome to develop. This is where the tendons in the hand and wrist become inflamed and swollen. If you experience repeated episodes of carpal tunnel syndrome, it can cause permanent and irreversible damage to the tendons.
One of the best ways to relieve wrist pain and protect yourself from developing any chronic conditions is to exercise your wrists.
Exercises for cashier wrist pain
1. Hand stretches
By stretching your wrists, hands and fingers you can help alleviate any pain. You can do this when you’re on your break or lunch at work. Rest your hand on a flat surface and slowly stretch your hands for about five seconds and then slowly close your hand into a fist. This exercise will help you stretch your tendons and reduce any discomfort. Do this exercise for a few minutes everyday.
2. Use a tennis ball
When chefs are dealing with sore feet, it’s recommended they roll their feet on a tennis ball (or a small ball). The rolling motion massages the muscles and tendons in the feet. This can also be done for the hands. Take a tennis ball and use your hand to roll the ball on a table.
3. Weight strengthening exercises
Exercises with small weights are effective ways of exercising your limbs and strengthening your tendons. At home, you can use small exercise weights. At work, you can use water bottles instead. To get the best results, this exercise should be done everyday for at least five minutes.
This exercise is best when you first start feeling pain in your wrists. If you do any strength exercises after being diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome or any other type of chronic wrist pain, you could cause further injury. Speak to your doctor first.
4. Massage your wrist
Firmly massaging your palms and your wrist can improve blood circulation and reduce pain.
5. Another way to defend from wrist pain - Do another activity
If you feel uncomfortable aches in your wrist, speak to your supervisor and ask if you can take a break from operating the tills and do another task for a bit instead.
One of the best ways to reduce cashier wrist pain is to make sure your arm is not doing the same repeated motions. Is it possible you can restock the shelves instead? Help with deliveries? Assist customers? It’s your supervisor’s responsibility to ensure you’re not at risk of any workplace hazards so let them know if you’re feeling any aches or pains.
How cashiers can improve their safety at work
There are many types of work-related hazards. The exercises listed above can help to protect you from repetitive strain injuries. You can also protect yourself from slips, trips and falls by making sure you’re wearing the right shoes for work. Slip-resistant shoes for cashiers give you extra grip when walking down wet supermarket aisles.
What’s the difference between slip-resistant shoes vs shoes from the high street?
You can’t rely on your favourite high street shoes to keep you safe at work. To see the difference between work shoes and shoes from the high street, read our free downloadable guide below.