‘BlackBerry Thumb’ gets serious

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blackberry thumb

It’s official. Go ahead and call in sick because you use your BlackBerry more than I use photoshop for RIM CEO idealisms. “Boss? Yeah, hey, it’s Steve. Um, I won’t be able to make it in today – got me a case of the ‘Thumb.” The reports have been floating around about BlackBerry Thumb becoming a serious issue, and it’s happened: Forbes has tossed up an article (with a clever “sour fruit”-punned title) noting that The American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) is calling “Blackberry Thumb” an “official workplace malady”.

Chances are if you’re checking this site, you are at risk of developing BBThumb. Thankfully, the APTA provides some tips on how to avoid the ‘Thumb, and exercises to remedy it.

- Take frequent breaks from your PDA. Don’t type for more than a few minutes at a time.
- Write fewer and shorter messages. Learn to abbreviate your responses.
- Try to avoid thumb-typing. Use your other fingers to type.
- If possible, place a support in your lap when using a PDA, so that your wrists are in a more upright position and not flexed or bent.

The APTA also recommends the following simple exercises:

- Tap each finger with the thumb of the same hand. Repeat five times.
- Alternate tapping the palm of your hand and the back of your hand against your thigh as quickly as you can. Repeat 20 times.
- Open your hands and spread your fingers as far apart as possible. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat eight times.
- Fold your hands together, and turn your palms away from your body as you extend your arms forward. You should only feel a gentle stretch. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat eight times.
- Fold your hands together, turn your palms away from your body, and extend your arms overhead. You should feel the stretch in your upper torso and shoulders to hand. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat eight times.

  • moog

    I have a hard time swallowing this. I have been using a BB for 6+ years, and have no problems. Are we talking about people with arthritis? :P

  • moog

    I have a hard time swallowing this. I have been using a BB for 6+ years, and have no problems. Are we talking about people with arthritis? :P

  • http://www.blackberrycool.com/ Steve St. Pierre

    The original title was “BlackBerry Thumb: Sit On It”, but the fact, unfortunately, is that people are actually ailing from too much BB use. It should come down to common sense – if using your BlackBerry causes your wrists to feel like they’re getting eaten by bears, it may be time to cool it.

  • http://www.blackberrycool.com Steve St. Pierre

    The original title was “BlackBerry Thumb: Sit On It”, but the fact, unfortunately, is that people are actually ailing from too much BB use. It should come down to common sense – if using your BlackBerry causes your wrists to feel like they’re getting eaten by bears, it may be time to cool it.