Although crocheting is far safer than other hobbies (take jousting, for example), it’s not without its dangers. Depending on your crochet style, genetic disposition and lifestyle, crocheting for long stretches of time can result in wrist/hand pain. Ouch.
What is an ergonomic hook?
An ‘ergonomic’ crochet hook is a hook that is designed to alleviate pain that occurs while crocheting. Most ergonomic hooks have an enlarged handle that can be more comfortable to hold.
I haven’t found much information on exactly why (medically speaking) a larger handle alleviates wrist pain while crocheting, but there is much anecdotal evidence that these types of hooks work.
There is a large variety of ergonomic hooks available on the market (check out my crochet hook review for some reviews). Some hooks simply have a thicker handle, while others have a shaped/contoured handle.
Is a ergonomic hook right for you?
If you’re experiencing tendonitis, arthritis or any other condition that makes crocheting painful… there’s a chance that using an ergonomic hook will provide relief.
The bad news is that there’s no sure-fire way to know which hook is right for you without just trying them out. For example, I find that the way I hold my crochet hook makes it difficult to hold the Addi Swing… but there are many other folks that swear by it.
I personally adore my Furls crochet hook, which is handmade with the width of your palm taken as a measurement.
Another factor to consider is the shape of the actual hook. We all prefer different hook shapes, and no matter how comfortable the handle is, you’re probably not going to regularly use a hook that has a hook shape you’re not a fan of.
The only way you’ll know for sure if a hook works for you is to try it out. I know… that may not have been what you wanted to hear!
Try wrist exercises!
If you’re experiencing wrist pain, it may also be worth your time to try doing wrist exercises regularly. Let’s admit it: crocheting isn’t an action that our bodies evolved to do, and it’s bound to be a little tiring. So, if you’re crocheting for hours on end, be nice to your wrists and give them regular breaks and stretches.
Be nice to your wrists
Listen to what your body is telling you. Even if you find a lovely ergonomic hook that works for you, you may not be able to crochet for long periods of time. Respect that, and break your crocheting into chunks.
In my experience, many folks with wrist pain are able to find a solution that works for them. It just may take a little trial and error!