Every time you grip an object, throw a ball, swing a golf club or rotate your hands, you use your wrist muscles. Aside from bodybuilders and individuals recovering from wrist injuries, few people deliberately target their wrist muscles in their strength training. However, any exercise that involves supporting or lifting weight with your hands will build your wrists. Some of the muscles in the forearm extend into the wrist as well, so forearm exercises also develop this area. While the most efficient wrist-builders require weights, you can work these muscles using your body weight alone.
Do basic yoga poses, such as Downward-Facing Dog, Upward-Facing Dog, Plank Pose and Side-Plank Pose. All these positions place approximately half of your body weight on your hands and wrists. In each pose, keep your abdominals tight and your shoulders away from your ears.
Practice more advanced yoga poses that include arm balances, such as Crow, Crane, Side-Crane and Peacock. These poses put your entire body weight on your hands and wrists. Only attempt these poses when you can sustain the basic poses without fatiguing your wrists.
Do pushups. Basic pushups work the wrists, along with the other muscle groups in the arms and shoulders. As you increase the number of pushups you are able to do, vary the exercise by doing pushups with one leg raised off the floor or using only one hand. This puts more weight on your wrists, while simply increasing the number of reps does not.
Hold a tennis ball in one hand. Squeeze the ball as tightly as you can for five seconds, then gradually release the flexion. Repeat 10 times on each hand. This strengthens the muscles in the hand that connect to the wrist.
If you have an injured wrist, follow your doctor's or physical therapist's instructions regarding rehabilitation exercises. Do not perform intense wrist exercises without your doctor's permission.