Who doesn't want to pick up a pair of Saroyans and start playing away? Well believe it or not, it's very easy to strain muscles and even tendons playing zills if you're not careful!
Start by finding a light, small pair of zills to start out with - you can practice without overworking. You can also strengthen your fingers with a simple rubber band! That's right - it works on the same principle as a resistance band! Find a band that is a bit thick so it doesn't roll and snap on your skin, and play with a few to find one with the perfect amount of resistance.
Exercise 1: First, place the band around your middle finger and thumb, like you're going to play zills, and stretch your fingers away from each other. You can also do the same exercise with each finger, just take it easy on the small ones! Also, practice isolation by keeping your other fingers still, and work to your fullest contraction to develop flexibility.
Exercise 2 Next try placing the band on your thumb and pinky, stretched across your palm. Stretch your thumb and pinky away from each other, and feel the muscles in your hand working! Try the same thing around the back of your hand for a different effect.
Make sure you don't over do it, and do the same number of reps on each hand!