In a recent thread, "Tired and cool down", I began to derail the OP's question by introducing stretches and exercises as warm-ups and cool-downs rather than play more notes. I attached everything that I had kept over the years, probably too much information, hoping that each of you might select a few for the sake of preventing injury, maintaining flexibility and good posture, and avoiding stiffening afterwards. Athletes,no matter what sport they are into, have a way of "limbering up" to get blood moving through their muscles. A swimmer or runner have to give their best from their first stroke/ stride. Cyclists warm up before their races and warm down afterwards. As musicians our hands have to give their best from the first notes and our brains have to be in gear too. A wise old hand surgeon, Professor Earl Owen, took a keen interest in musician's health here. Part of his advice was to go for a one-hour walk, especially if we were to practice for long periods. I must try to find his letter that was full of advice. He was a leading micro-surgeon who re-attached severed fingers and hands, etc. I have been picking my physiotherapist's brain while being worked on. They agree with the ideas of warming up with some exercises and a few stretches before playing and in breaks then some stretches after playing while cooling down. All these should not be too strenuous and be within the normal range of movement. So think of the muscles, shapes, alignments and range of movements that we use. More recently I have been made aware of nerve glides which are exercises and stretches that move nerves within their sheaths. I started getting a trigger finger in my second (middle) finger LH. As I bent and straightened the finger there was a click and jump in the movement. The middle joint became very sore and stiff. This had me visiting a hand surgeon who gave me a cortisone injection that seemed to work well for a while. I have had bouts of tingling and numb fingers occasionally, including once losing all sensation while playing in an orchestra - very scary. Following nerve conduction tests he declared that I had mild to moderate carpal tunnel problems. After playing Frank's D minor Symphony , Tchaik. No.5 and Mozart No. 41 on three consecutive days with three different orchestras the numbness and tingling became full-time and there was some pain, and I could not close my fist fully - even more scary. Next step was to find a really good hand physiotherapist who introduced me to a regime of nerve glides for both my hand and carpal tunnel as well as my median nerve. The effect on my thumb and two fingers may go all the way back to where the nerves exit my spine at the base of my neck. Good news is that things are slowly but steadily improving and I have never had to stop playing because the way I shape and use my fingers is outside forming the loose fist that can be painful. I hope to avoid surgery and the physio is very hopeful. He thinks that some nerve glides could be added to stretches and exercises for long term injury prevention. Does anyone have similar problems and insights to share?