Does cracking your fingers help your dexterity

I play guitar and piano and i was wondering, does cracking your finger help your finger coordination? Does it also help if you get a lot of calcium, or lack calcium?

I don’t have any kind of scientific evidence, but I certainly feel like my fingers are more flexible after cracking my knuckles. They can bend back further, and if they need to be cracked, without me cracking them, they start to feel like they’re jammed up.

I believe it’s stretching the finger muscles that helps, not necessarily the cracking itself.

Are you considering starting to crack your knuckles, or simply continuing an already existing habit?

I probably shouldn’t be doing this in GQ as this is just my own opinion but yes cracking your fingers can make you more dextrous.

IMO touching yourself (oooer!) re-sets the parameters in your brain and helps you to know where your limbs and fingers are and what their limits are. I feel clumsiness in people (e.g reaching through a glass tumbler and knocking it off a table) can be reduced by occasionaly running your fingers down the length of your arms and touching your fingertips together.

So any touch feedback helps and cracking your fingers would fall into this category.

Cracking your knuckles may or may not result in better flexability but it will surely lead to deterioration of the joints and arthritic conditions later in life.

Be sure that “The Game is Worth the Chase” before continuing the practice.

I was firmly under the impression that was a old wives tale or at least has never been proven. Can you back that up with a cite?

Now, see, this is why I crack my fingers. One crrrick and someone will always shout “arthritis!”, met immediately by “old wives tale!” from someone else. Then they start arguing about it. Great for long train journeys if you need entertaining.

Here is a site called “ask a scientist” where they say it is harmless:

I quote “Cracking knuckles has NEVER been associated with causing arthritis.
This concept is as wrong as saying weight lifting makes you short, or
playing basketball makes you tall.”

Here is a site called “The Straight Dope” :slight_smile:

Yeah, but nobody goes there any more; it’s too crowded.


  1. There are no finger muscles, so you can’t stretch them (thumb doesn’t count :stuck_out_tongue: );

  2. Cracking your knuckles causes no harm;

  3. I have cracked my knuckles for decades, and it seems that I’ve grown habituated to it – I feel clumsy and stiff until I’ve cracked them. Thus, the notion of knuckle-cracking improving dexterity. I don’t think it’s true.

I had a conversation about this very subject with my chiropractor/nutritionalist not so long ago, so the way some of these posts are worded made me grin. I saw him crack his knuckles once, and asked him about the arthritis question. His answer was (almost word for word) that that is what is called a “wives tale” and that cracking your knuckles is actually good for you…I believe he said it released built up calcium in the joints, or something to that effect. Whatever he said specifically, he did say that cracking your knuckles can actually help prevent arthritis.

Again, I’m quoting my chiro to the best of my recollection, but there you go.

     - Freewill39.

Whoa! I sure learned something new today! While there are actually some muscles in the fingers, most of the muscles that control your fingers are actually located in the hand and arm!
I’d assumed that the squishy parts of my fingers were mainly muscle; turns out it’s mostly fat. Shoulda paid more attention in Anatomy and Physiology, I guess!