Wand Exercises

Wand Exercises

These exercises will help increase your arm movements. Use a wand made from an old broom handle, cane, ball bat, yard stick, or three foot dowel rod for the following exercises.

Do all the exercises _____ times each, _____ times a day.

How to do these exercises

  • It is best to do these exercises sitting on a hard, straight-back chair with your feet flat on the floor. Keep your head and back in an upright position. Avoid slumping or arching your back.
  • Sitting in front of a mirror is helpful to see how you are sitting.
  • Keep both arms straight as possible except when told to bend your elbows.
  • Hold the wand about 12 inches apart with your palms down.
  • All exercises should be done slowly and smoothly. Do not use fast or jerky movements.
  • Do not push your arms beyond their limits.

Exercise 1

  • Lean forward with the wand resting on your ankles.
  • Slowly bring your arms up to shoulder height.
Man sitting in chair holding cane, bringing to toes and back up

Exercise 2

  • Slowly raise the wand over your head. 
  • Slowly bend your elbows so that the wand is behind your head.
  • Bring the wand up and then back to the starting position.
Mand sitting in chair holding cane over head, bringing down behind head

Exercise 3

  • With both arms straight out, raise the wand to shoulder height.
  • Bring the wand toward your face, while bending your elbows and keeping them by your side.
  • Straighten your arms and return them to the starting position.
Man holding cane out in front at shoulder level, brings up to face

Exercise 4

  • Straighten both arms toward your knees, and then slowly bend your elbows toward your chest.
  • Straighten your arms back toward your knees again.
Man sitting in chair with cane on his lap, bends arms to bring cane up to chin

Exercise 5

  • Place the wand straight up in between your legs with your unaffected hand holding it in place.
  • Now place your affected hand on top of the other and slowly climb the wand by placing one hand above the other. Remember to keep both arms straight.
  • Climb down the wand the same way.
Man sitting in chair, holding cane between hands straight up and down

Exercise 6

  • Keep your arms straight at shoulder height. Move your arms to the right as far as possible.
  • Come back to the starting position and then move to the left as far as possible.
Man sitting in cahir holding cane at shoulder level, moving to far left and then right

Exercise 7

  • Grasp one end of the wand in your left hand and place the tip of it in your right hand.
  • Move the wand to the right side of your body and as high up toward your head as possible. Your right arm will be moving away from your body.
  • Return the wand to the starting position.
  • Then, switch positions by grasping the end of the wand in your right hand with the tip of it in your left hand.
  • Move the wand to your left side.
Man sitting in chair holding cane in front, bring one side up to right, then left

Exercise 8

  • Hold the wand upright keeping your hands straight next to each other and in front of your body. Keep your elbows straight.
  • Twist the wand all the way to the left, then all the way to the right.
Man sitting in chair holding cane in front, twists cane to left, then right

Exercise 9

  • Keep both of your arms straight and toward your right side.
  • Move the wand from side to side. Slowly do this clockwise and counterclockwise.
Man sitting in chair, moving cane over head one side to the other

Exercise 10

  • Sit sideways in the chair so the wand can move backwards. Put both your hands on the wand and hold it behind your body.
  • Move the wand up towards your head, as far as possible without leaning your body forward.
  • Bring the wand back down, slowly.
Man sitting on chair holding cane behind back

© 2000 – July 1, 2019, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.

This handout is for informational purposes only. Talk with your doctor or healthcare team if you have any questions about your care. For more health information, call the Library for Health Information at 614-293-3707 or email: health-info@osu.edu.