by Ned Stoller Ned Stoller



In part 2 of our blog, we will focus on Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS).  As with many jobs, (CTS) can be a common risk factor.  The fishing industry is no different. Many fishermen struggle with a variety of musculoskeletal problems ranging from lower back to shoulders, knees, and hands.  Repeated throwing and pulling of the net as well as bending forward repeatedly to lift and move the heavy load all can cause prolonged, repetitive grasping or extreme flexing positions of the wrist.  This all contributes to CTS. Vibrating tools or tools that cause regular impact on the hand can also cause CTS.  Cleaning fish requires knife use, with the same action being repeated over and over again on each fish.  Any long-term repeated action with hands can cause CTS.  There are a variety of tools that help lessen the pain from carpel tunnel syndrome (CTS) in a worker’s hands.


Anti-vibration gloves can absorb the energy from steering wheels and power tools that flare CTS symptoms. Without these gloves, the vibration can cause pain and numbness in a man’s hands.


Anti-Vibration Gloves  


Grip-assist gloves will help workers to securely hold tools, thereby quickening their production rate since the chance or instance of dropping things is eliminated. Knives, and other frequently used hand tools have small diameter handles that are especially difficult to keep a firm, secure hold on. This grip assist glove uses a Velcro strap to hold the hand in a tight fist around the tool’s handle. Velcro takes the strain instead of the hand and decreases pain in the hand. Neutral-wrist hand tools can be securely held by workers without bending the wrist.


Gripeeze Gloves



Most hand tools have straight handles. This forces the wrist to twist forward while holding the tool. When the wrist is twisted in that manner, the grip strength of a hand drops by about 50%.  Neutral-wrist tools solve these problems because they allow the worker to hold the handle without twisting his wrist, providing maximum grip strength.

The Easi-Grip Handle can be attached to a cleaning knife handle which allows the worker to grasp the tool in the neutral-wrist position.  It also has a separate cuff attachment which will help with wrist stabilization.


Easi-grip handles


Easi-Grip Arm Support Cuff


This will help minimize CTS.


Another version of this is the RoboHandle.  Other hand tools are difficult to use with impaired grip strength or limited range of motion. The RoboHandle® solves these problems because it attaches to the existing tool handles and allows the worker to grip the handle without twisting the wrist, providing maximum grip strength. The RoboHandle® arm cuff connects to the forearm to provide control of the tool similar to using two hands. This tool assist comes in two versions, the standard and a split version.




              Standard RoboHandle                     


Split RoboHandle








Repairing fishing nets is a necessary and frequent task in the fishing industry.  A fishing net needle filler helps a person with weaker grip strength or carpel tunnel syndrome to wind twine onto a needle. Fishing nets are repaired and constructed by passing a needle full of twine through existing net webbing and around floating and sinking cords. Sewing the net is a repetitive motion that is unfortunately unavoidable, but wrapping twine onto the needle can be done by a fishing net filler. The needle and twine spool fasten into place on the filler. The handle is cranked, making the needle spin, and the twine unrolls from the spool as it winds onto the needle. This video link shows the previously described process.



There are many options to assist with CTS in the fishing industry.  Think of these as good solutions.  Drop us a message if you’ve seen any other assists to make jobs safer and easier in the fishing industry!