T Nation

Hey Fathers, Hand Cramps?

From holding your baby all the time? Im actually finding it impossible to lift with these cramps in my palms. Any weight on it hurts like hell. Have any of you had this?

Ummmmm, no.

How heavy is the bub?

You might need to have that looked at, or just learn to relax more. They won’t break.

It is a common problem with new parents. The short, easy answer is, “Don’t hold the baby that way.” It isn’t hurting the baby, but it is hurting you. Don’t use the ‘hands making a circle’ kind of grip around the baby’s torso with thumbs in front and fingers in back. That’s what’s probably giving you the most trouble. Any substitute that is comfy and safe is fine. Scoop 'em up and hold 'em like footballs, park them on your hip, whatever works.

Guys don’t have that hip!

I’ve always found it interesting that I could NEVER figure how my wife carried our kids that way.

Ladyjaine is right. I have had similar problems in the past with my 2 kids.

Basically, just relax when you hold the kid. My issues were my traps would tense up and get really tight.

Just relax and try another position.

I hold my daughter like a football; head at my elbow face down so I can pat her back. Once my arm is fried I put on the baby back pack and I have use of my arms again.


I swear part of the reason I need to build strength is to carry around my 11 month old - he’s a load!

I know it’s not very “manly”, but I found the baby sling a HUGE help when he was younger. Now it still helps to carry him on my hip, but as an infant it was really great. He loved it (slept great) and I had my hands free.

I really like the Maya Wrap www.mayawrap.com. This picture is from their website.

[quote]jhferry wrote:
From holding your baby all the time? Im actually finding it impossible to lift with these cramps in my palms. Any weight on it hurts like hell. Have any of you had this?[/quote]

Put the kid in baby overalls and carry him/her like a brief case from the straps. Just kidding.

The answer from my would be “no, I haven’t”…but I have gotten direct bicep work from holding mine since, as was mentioned before, I don’t have that hip.

[quote]Jillybop13 wrote:

I know it’s not very “manly”, but I found the baby sling a HUGE help when he was younger. …
I really like the Maya Wrap www.mayawrap.com. This picture is from their website.
[/quote]

That guy’s facial expression is one of a person that has had the life sucked out of them. Yes, not very manly, indeed.

Seven years ago I would have called you a wussy. Seven years ago I did not have a child!

Yeah, this can be a very real problem. My problem was with my left biceps or rather the tendons using the football position (resist urge to spike child.) I never really noticed it until after putting her down, then realized I could barely straighten out my arm. This carried over into the gym and I had pain when chinning and curling. Lasted at least a year!

I could never use one of those kid carrier things though. Better to hurt and do hour long isometrics than to use one of those.

Only thing you can do (besides dumping off fatherly duties on the wife - not recommended) is to switch arms and carry positions, but that’s easier said than done because it’s instinct to use the safest position.

Non-parents: don’t bother responding. This is definitely one of those things you’re clueless about until you’ve been there!

I loved it when my wife would dress our kids in Oshcosh bib-overalls. You instantly have handles to carry them with.

It sounds like you are trying to be TOOO careful. Babies are tough. You arent gonna hurt one with normal handling.

Think of holding a baby as technique: Put thee baby on one shoulder in the burp position, pull your shoulders back, chest out, hold your head high, and bend at the kneees a little for ballance maintaining the lumbar lordotic curve.

The kid will about rest there on it’s own if done correctly.

Also be warned. Laying on the couch or easy chair with a kid on your chest will drain you of energy and induce a coma like condition. Have plenty of Spike and Surge around to combat this.

[quote]Chris Shugart wrote:

Non-parents: don’t bother responding. This is definitely one of those things you’re clueless about until you’ve been there!

[/quote]

Rats!!

Im so glad Im not alone here. I have a cramp in my hand thats killing me. Hes colic so need to be held all the time. He likes to be belly to belly sideways (belly heat I guess) So I have to curl that right hand to tuck him. I guess I have to wait it out and limit that position the best he will allow me to : )

[quote]Matthew9v9 wrote:

Put the kid in baby overalls and carry him/her like a brief case from the straps. Just kidding.

quote]

Once the kid is old enough to hold it’s head up and arms up I’d carried mine like this a lot. They loved. I’d swing them around , and as they got older they’d make the airplane sounds so I didn’t have to anymore. Just make sure that the shoulder buckles are on good. Broke one once and had to make a one sided emergency landing.

Think the biceps tendon is bad, hold a 40 lb kid on your shoulders for a few hours watching fireworks or a parade. The next day your traps will talk to you good!

As for the kiddie backpacks; I loved ours until the child learns that they can kick you. Then it’s time to move onto something else.

I also don’t suggest carrying a kid that spits up a lot in one. Saw this one. I didn’t experience it first hand. But the kid puked up all over the back of the Mom’s head and gravity carried it down with no way to get away from it. As kids are, the little one then proceeded to play with the now goo filled hair.

Remember these times and cherish them.

[quote]jhferry wrote:
Im so glad Im not alone here. I have a cramp in my hand thats killing me. Hes colic so need to be held all the time. He likes to be belly to belly sideways (belly heat I guess) So I have to curl that right hand to tuck him. I guess I have to wait it out and limit that position the best he will allow me to : )[/quote]

I hear ya.

My little girl is 5 mos. and was colicky? for the first 3.5 mos. WOW!
I’ll never get that shrill sound completely out of my head.

Don’t worry man, it goes away and the world is a better place. Ahhh sleep.

I always tell people that only other parents who have actually had a colic baby can understand it. Even other parents really have no idea. Im starting the MSM/Glucos combo again, maybe that will help.

Had the same problem with the biceps tendon and the traps.Got ragged on about lifting iron but cant lift a little baby? I found that by supporting the holding arm usually helps.ie.child rests on left arm,left palm rests in crook of right elbow. Basically forming a triangle with both arms usually helped me.Of course you do not have use of your arms but you can still use them aftrewards.They grow up real fast and this pain is nothing compared to some other stuff coming your way smile nothing lasts forever.

[quote]jhferry wrote:
I always tell people that only other parents who have actually had a colic baby can understand it. Even other parents really have no idea. Im starting the MSM/Glucos combo again, maybe that will help. [/quote]

Have you asked your pediatritian if it could be acid reflux? We fought tooth and nail to get every ounce of dairy out of my wife’s diet while she was nursing our girl and later found out it was just acid reflux whenever Faith would lay down.

If s/he says they’ll try out Zantac, see if you can find a “compounding pharmacy” near you. The regular kid’s liquid is like mint oil. Friggin’ nasty.

Anyway, that was our experience.

Matt

[quote]sasquatch wrote:
Guys don’t have that hip!

I’ve always found it interesting that I could NEVER figure how my wife carried our kids that way.[/quote]

Yep, thought my wife was a weakling until I saw her heft the kids around. I think it’s the “hip thing” that gave her an advantage.

but once they are a little older, carrying them on your shoulders is THE way to go. Just wear a hat if he/she is a drooly kid.

I also do good mornings while he’s up there; he thinks it’s fun.