Physio warns of smart phone RSI risk

A physiotherapist has warned about the rise of repetitive strain injuries associated with smart phones.

James Rind, a musculoskeletal physiotherapist from Cardiff, was invited to appear on ITV Wales news on 25 January to discuss the physiological effects of excessive smart phone use.

‘It’s the highly repetitive nature and regular frequency of smart phone usage that can lead to cumulative damage and musculoskeletal disorders,’ Mr Rind told Frontline.

‘The commonly adopted static posture of the neck, shoulders and upper spine is also a risk, as they are in a very static position.’

Mr Rind says a lack of awareness about overuse could potentially lead to an ‘MSK time bomb’ if vast numbers of today’s smart phone users go on to develop problems later in life.

However, people can take simple steps to reduce the RSI risks associated with smart phone use, he said.

‘The key messages are to reduce your duration of uninterrupted use; avoid using just one thumb or finger; get into the habit of periodically stretching you fingers, hand and wrists and be aware of the posture you are adopting whilst using your smart phone – change your spine and upper limb posture on a regular basis and avoid prolonged static positions.’

Robert Millett

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