View Full Version : some hand numbness at around 1K.

August 24th, 2011, 10:54 AM
At around 1K I start getting a bit of hand numbness, especially if swimming hard. Anyone else get this?

August 24th, 2011, 10:56 AM
At around 1K I start getting a bit of hand numbness, especially if swimming hard. Anyone else get this?

Yep, I have it also, right at 1300 continuous yards. It is only my right hand. No idea why although I assume it is some stroke flaw. It actually comes in very handy for open water swims as I know exactly where I am when it hits.

August 24th, 2011, 11:26 AM
I get it in both hands equally. The only thing I can think of is nerve impingement due to muscles in the upper back/shoulder/arm area enlarging? The hands are fine all other times when not swimming and they seem to be fine when doing intervals with a bit of rest. I think it is the continuous thing that triggers it.

I don't think I should be too worried about it? Not sure.

August 24th, 2011, 12:41 PM
I get in my left hand. Sometimes if it really bothers me, I try shaking it out on a few recovery strokes. Seems to help (very) slightly.

edit: I meant to say I shake it out during the recovery phase on a few strokes. Like I'm waving to the lifeguard. Hehe

August 24th, 2011, 09:52 PM
My doctor says mine is due to carpal tunnel syndrome. However, I have noticed that it is worse when swimming a long distance in colder water, so I'm not sure if it's carpal tunnel, or Reynauds now! In any case, I shake my arm out too - do breast stroke or something and that fixes it for a short while - but it can really be kinda freaky,

August 25th, 2011, 12:16 AM
Try folding & unfolding the hand when out of the water when this starts. It might just be tension from repetition at this point.

August 25th, 2011, 12:41 PM
I've had bilateral numbness in the hands. This was not associated wtih swimming directly.

It was some kind of impingment of nerves in my neck from too tight mucles in my chest and sternum area. This tightness might have been partly from swimming.

What takes care of it is some stretching against a wall. Hard to describe. Can't find a description on the web.

Another streach that helps is in "figure 6" on this site.


I always use that stretch as an adjunct to the stretch I cna't find, though, so I'm not sure it will help.

If you have good health care, ask your doctor. If stretches can help, you probably want to find a good physical therapist.

A relationship with a good PT is an aging athlete's best tool.

Of course, if it is Reynaults or some other nerve metabolism problems, stretches are unlikely to help at all. And your doc might be able to do a differential diagnosis.

August 25th, 2011, 04:31 PM
At around 1K I start getting a bit of hand numbness, especially if swimming hard. Anyone else get this?

yeap. mostly during OW swims since I rarely swim more than 200m in a pool series.

August 25th, 2011, 10:30 PM
I've had that when we did 30 minute swims years ago. In my case it was from not relaxing the arm while recovering and swimming tense. My forearm muscles would get a little pumped up and circulation was slightly impaired. It was only one side, not sure if that was my "breathing" side or not. Seems like we were swimming LCM so there were less-frequent turns available to get off the arms.

Think: Finesse power, not bulldozer power. :)

August 27th, 2011, 12:45 PM
good suggestion about stretching and also relaxing during recovery.

It did it again today. I am trying to get on my sides more when swimming distance to see if this helps.

August 27th, 2011, 06:17 PM
WOW! For years I thought this was only a me thing. My numbness started in high school (usually during competition) after a car accident. I attributed it to a side affect of my injuries that developed after the initial lower back injury. Unfortunately, there was no predicting when my numbness would appear, but it was both hands and ran up my arms...and now that I think about it, it's odd it started in the hands and ran up rather than the shoulders and running down. Anyway, If I recall correctly, I was still being treated by a chiropractor at the time and he did some adjustments to the shoulders and neck.
Best of luck to you in working through your situation!