Why Walking Causes Swollen Hands?


Find Out Why Walking Causes Swollen Hands


Does going for a walk or run make your hands get swollen? Wondering why you get it? Well, read on!

Walkers and runners experience swollen hands in hot weather. Typically, the swelling vanishes after the workout is completed. In case, the swelling does not subside after the exercise, you should think of paying a visit to your doctor.

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Walking Causes Swollen Hands – Reasons

Blood flow

On a cold day, you would have noticed that your hands are cold but they get warmed up as you walk and raise your heart rate. The increased heart rate sends more amount of blood to the extremities. As internal heat increases due to working out, you need to sweat to prevent overheating in the body. The hands and feet both are part of this system. Blood flow to the capillaries is more and that makes your fingers and hands swell. The feet also swell to about one shoe size.

Electrolyte imbalance

Electrolyte imbalance can cause swelling. Drink sports drinks to the replace electrolytes in the body. Also consume the right amount of fluids to maintain electrolyte balance.

Arm motion

Walking with the hands below your heart makes it difficult for the circulatory system to bring back the blood flow to the hands. The arm and leg muscles assist the return of blood to the heart via the veins. When the arm muscles are not used, there is a slower return of blood and this can cause swelling in the hands.

How to prevent and treat swelling of hands?

  • Remove rings and wristbands before you head out for a walk.
  • If your fitness band has to be tight to detect heart rate, you can wear it on the wrist and forearm instead of the narrowest part of the wrist.
  • Balance your intake of water and salt. Sweating makes you lose water and salt. So, whenever possible get yourself weighed before and after a walk so that you know whether you are drinking too much or too less of water. It is important to keep your weight the same always.
  • Carry a tiny object that you can grip lightly from time to time while walking. It can be anything like a flashlight, rubber ball or a foam pad. It helps work muscles and improves the return of blood to the heart.
  • Try to do an arm circle every now and then. It helps loosen up shoulders and checks walking posture.
  • Keep your hands relaxed and slightly open instead of clenching them. Stretch your fingers often. You can also play the piano with just your fingers.
  • Rest your hands on your head for a few seconds so that they are above the heart’s level.

Hope the above helps!

Other cause for swollen hands


If the swelling is due to walk or run, it will vanish after you have cooled down. However, if the swelling remains for a longer time, or you have any pain or redness or a weakness of grip, you need to be checked by the doctor.

The swelling can be due to:

Apart from the above there can be sudden swelling in the hands because of sunburn, injury, insect bites, stings, or any kind of infection. Swelling in only one hand means that you need to see the doctor.

Swelling can also be due to the side-effect of some medicines like the ones for high BP, steroids, diabetes medicines, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and estrogens.

The bottom line

So, you need not worry if the swelling subsides after your walk or run. The reason to worry arises only when the swelling persists for long or is in only one hand.

Hope you found this post ‘Why Walking Causes Swollen Hands?’ informative!

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