In America, arthritis, or joint pain, is the leading cause of disability, affecting 50 million adults and 300,000 children. Common joint symptoms in arthritis patients include swelling, stiffness, and mobility issues.
Experts agree that exercise can help relieve chronic arthritis pain. It may seem counterintuitive, but exercise can help reduce arthritis symptoms. To help fight arthritis pain, we’ve compiled a list of the best joint-friendly exercises you can start today.
Although movement can seem counterproductive when you are in pain, it is essential in helping treat arthritis. Moving too much can cause stiffness and more pain. Therefore, when you are not exercising, you weaken your supporting muscles, which puts more strain on your joints.
Exercise can help reduce symptoms of arthritis. Low impact exercises can help increase strength, flexibility, and overall health. Plus, exercise can relieve fatigue, improve function, and improve mood.
Keep it simple. Low impact exercise doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Being joint-friendly, they put less stress on the body, so they are better suited for people with arthritis. Let’s take a look at the best joint-friendly exercises to help relieve arthritis pain:
1. Low impact aerobic exercise
The benefits of aerobic exercise are numerous, especially in terms of cardiovascular health. Aerobic exercise can also be beneficial if you are trying to lose weight and reduce joint pain.
You can reduce stress on your joints by engaging in low-impact aerobic activities such as walking, cycling, swimming (water aerobics), and using an exercise bike or elliptical trainer.
You can also take spinning classes or go for a run on the treadmill if you are not an outdoor enthusiast. These activities are ideal for increasing your heart rate without putting too much strain on your joints.
2. Muscle building exercises
Inactivity weakens your supporting muscles, increasing joint stress. Muscle building activities, such as weight training or working out with resistance bands, can help you maintain or build muscle.
3. Flexibility and range of motion exercises
Joint stiffness is a common complaint in arthritis patients. It can make daily activities difficult and painful.
Regular flexibility training and range of motion exercises like yoga and stretching can help reduce stiffness. Stretches can include rolling your shoulders back and forth and raising your arms above your head.
For the treatment of arthritis, gentle, low-impact movement is better than nothing. Start slowly and watch how your body responds to the new exercise program. You should also consult with your doctor about creating an exercise program tailored to your specific arthritis symptoms.