What is RSI?


What is RSI?

(Adapted from Repetitive Strain Injury by Dr. Emil Pascarelli and Deborah Quilter)

In simple medical terms, repetitive strain injury (RSI) is defined as a cumulative trauma disorder (CTD) stemming from prolonged repetitive, forceful, or awkward hand movements.

The result is damage to muscles, tendons, and nerves of the neck, shoulder, forearm, and hand, which can cause pain, weakness, numbness, or impairment of motor control.

So do you think there more could be done by manufactures to develop hand tool. (squeegee handles, pole trade and WFP etc )
That can be held in a more natural instead of prolonged repetitive, forceful, or awkward hand movements.

(Thoughts please)


Good question.

One big RSI hazard is pain in the thumbs from mobile device use.

Maybe pain in the neck is a risk from watching so many ‘zero detail’ swivel videos. :slight_smile:

Or neck pain from looking up to the brush at the end of a pole.

Is this leading to a pitch for swivel tools? I know Wagga says the Wagtail saved his career as he had RSI from using fixed squeegees.

PolznBladz advocates working two handed with a mop and squeegee in opposite hands to avoid straining one side of the body. Squeegees with attached mops - Moerman FliQ, Wagtail High Flyer etc. negate this however.

The best way to avoid RSI is to keep general fitness at a high level, along with working as many muscle groups as possible on a regular basis. Be conscious of repetitive movement and switch hands and techniques regularly. On pole work, hold the pole nearer the ground by adding sections rather than overstretching.

Well that’s about it with my thoughts…


But generally how can we avoid prolonged repetitive, (forceful, or awkward hand movements.) ?


Yes, and there are things being done like lighter wfp poles, lighter squeegees, the shape of handles, belay glasses, swivel handles…and I think more can be done by the individual in learning how to care for the body. Learning different ways of standing, learning how to balance ones weight, not favoring one leg or the other. Learning new ways of moving arms and legs, attempting to be ambidextrous. Also regular stretching, arms legs, backs, hands, neck. I see a chiropractor monthly too. Then there is eating well so the body can maintain and heal itself.
Taking supplements the aid the joints and ligaments. Caffeine and sugar wreak havoc with joints in the long run. Window cleaning isn’t as bad as roofing but it will takes it’s toll if we don’t take care of ourselves.


That’s easy…don’t do them, specially when it comes to forcefulness. Learn as many ways to clean a window as possible so you can break up the reptitiveness. I will often use wfp on a first floor when it could be well done by hand, but I’ve been cleaning all day by hand and the change is nice for the body. And it works the other way too. I am more interested in what’s easiest on the body than getting done quickly. Swivel handles make normally awkward movements much less so.


Correct but there is much more to improve on that concept.


I’m sure, but hey, you’re the inventor… :slight_smile: You must have ideas for that, yes?


I never use Wagtail Flipper or Moerman Fliq in hand anymore. Always on, at the very least, a short pole. For in hand work squeegee and seperate scrubber.


The answer to that is not only an idea but actually have the solution.
Using prototyped working swivel squeegee handle.
As seen in videos that most people would of seen.
Everything is ready to go manufacturing wise.
But can not make and deliver on the market like the larger players.
Unless can find one that is interested in making them.


From what I see it either people who have a pre existing injury or people that just can’t fan correctly that have a problem, I personally do not like swivel type squeegees in hand.

I have used various squeegees for years and never had a problem with RSI, I even have a calcification in a bone in my right wrist my main squeegee hand( had for 25 years or more) and still it causes no issues, I can do other activities and after a short time I notice that it starts to ache, but I can clean windows all day long and its 100% fine. I personally believe it comes down to technique or injury.

Just take the founder of wagtail :Willie and his employees had developed Carpal Tunnel Syndrome from using tools that were heavy and cumbersome. Users were forced to manipulate their arms in unforgiving, unnatural ways, and it made work time consuming and difficult.

Squeegees are not heavy nor cumbersome, unnatural and unforgiving arm movements. Honestly I did martial arts for over 10 years and the movements were very natural when compared to say a Kata.

So for me your solution might work for some, but not for me.


Yes hear you load a clear.
I have an old injury on the wrist where nearly lost hand in a machine and now have also arthritis in both hands.
Understand being sceptical.
Willie had the concept but it was never thought though.
Unless can get someone to manufacture this it probable be a while till you see this on the market.
But please don’t shoot down something you have not tried.


I’m not shooting it down, the thing is the reason i don’t like wagtails and even the execlerator as a swivel is because all that movement instead of being spread throughout the body it is focused into the wrist, there for increasing the RSI to that particular point. when I use a wagtail I get less than 1 window down when it starts to ache my wrist due to my prior injury I guess this is why i would not use it. As a hand tool, it still may be something I would use on a pole, I saw 1 video where you had this on a WFP, I would certainly be interested in that application just not as a hand tool.

I hope you get it on the market, all the best.


Growing up I recall carpal tunnel syndrome.

It was what everyone was talking about, primarily focused on computer keyboard mouse use.

Theres always something and so much research is done then years later it us forgotten.

The body can only take so much, joints wear and if you dont take preventative measures or precautions are hit harder.

Every industry, sport or activity has well documented issues from repetitive movements.


So when I started WC right on the first day knew could not use a fixed squeegee due to a old injury.
After looking for alternative’s to fixed squeegee handles found the Wagtail.
This at the time enabled me to a squeegee without much pain.
But after a week or so noticed had problems using it (did not work it out at the time.)
That the disc had become loose connection on the handle.
So after many years, mods and changes to the squeegee handle found alterative swivel movement.
(Which I believe will stop or at least less painful carpal tunnel syndrome. or RSI symptoms while using the new type swivel handle)


…Same here…love it on a pole but not in hand.


Pivoting squeegees in hand: handle at 20-25° returns the integrity of the hand, wrist, forearm alignment. Ensuring that the pivot is tight (no lateral slop) but still butter smooth maintains accurate pressure and blading along its full length. Herman pioneered the angle change and although confirmed by many of us has been universally ignored by manufacturer. Even Moerman’s 25° is there purely as an angle option and not for any ergonomic reasoning.


So found that the angle is not the only part of the problem.
It is the swivel mechanism it self as well.
This what we have developed and patented.


So does your swivel help with limiting the repetetive movement?




Been using the prototype handle for about 11/2 year.
Found using it actually increase blood circulation in the hand.
And any symptoms had RSI, arthritis has all but been eliminated in the working hand.