I recently had a thumb injury which has not prevented me from painting or working with a needle & thread, but it sure was annoying and a bit sore. I'm glad to say it is healing, although very slowly and it's still very tender. It got me thinking about injuries that artists - and anyone who does any kind of repetitive work especially - can and do get. Some are easy to fix, others never really heal and keep flaring up, and other are, well, continually problematic.
Injuries may not be a very exciting topic, but is one that I thought was worth addressing. Because artists, painters, and anyone creative can be at risk for injury. We do need to know how to properly use brushes and pencils in order to minimize potential problems. We need to ensure lighting in our studios is good. Neck and shoulder issues are quite common. Are we leaning over too much, are we straining our necks, our eyes or other muscles? Repetitive strain injuries are all too common, affecting the wrist and shoulder, even fingers and thumbs.
Help can be obtained from your doctor, and through massage or physio therapies. But it's best to prevent these injuries from happening in the first place since, as I mentioned above, some take longer than others to heal. None of us wants to give up our creative ventures!
I recently came across a web site on an "Artist Injury Prevention Program" http://www.selfcare4rsi.com/artist.html. The site includes descriptions of the various problems that can crop up. They aren't restricted to just artists, but to writers, golfers, sports enthusiasts and so on.
The web site talks about the importance of stretching and includes examples of stretches.
Now the information provided of course does not take the place of your health care provider, but maybe if we are all a bit more aware of these potential issues and are in touch with how our bodies feel, we can prevent some of these injuries from happening in the first place. I have a good stretch program that I follow 3-4 times per week, partly as a result of a wrist problem, but also to prevent problems in other areas.
I hope you find this link as useful as I do.
Awakening the heart
Artist - Anne Warburton
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It's taken years to discover the medium I enjoy the most. And how what I have learned before somehow fits into what I am doing now. Even when I travel my needles and threads are with me so I can continue to create while away.