What Exercises Are Useful for Arthritis Sufferers?

As we all age and our bodies begin to gradually break down, a lot of us begin to suffer from symptoms of arthritis. There are 3 different types of arthritis that affect the body: osteoarthritis, rheumatoid, and psoriatic.

Osteoarthritis is the most common of these 3 forms and is often referred as the 'wear and tear' form of arthritis as it is caused by injuries, overuse of the joints from excessive movement, or the extra stress placed on joints by obesity. While exercise can benefit all forms of arthritis, the following will focus specifically on osteoarthritis since it is the most common form. No matter what, always check with your doctor before starting any exercise program.

The common benefits of exercise hold true to someone battling with arthritis. Exercise will help with strength and flexibility; which in turn will help with joint pain. By strengthening the surrounding muscle groups, less strain will be placed on the joints themselves. Exercising will also curb obesity. Simply weighing less will place less stress on the joints leading to less wear and tear.

The next question is what type of exercises should one do if they have osteoarthritis. The basic rules that apply for anyone exercising hold true once again for those with arthritis. A good mixture of aerobic, anaerobic, and stretching exercises will be most beneficial. For those with lower extremity arthritis aerobic exercises such as running or even walking may be difficult initially but starting with a lower level of intensity will be just as good before adding in more intensity.

There is no reason that anyone should start off a workout program all-out whether they are fully healthy or have arthritis. A slower, more gradual progression is always best for everyone and that holds especially true for those with arthritis. By beginning an exercise program too intensely the joints will be placed under extra stress because the surrounding muscles groups have not been strengthened enough yet. This is where strength training comes into play.

The more strength and muscle that an individual has helps to take some of the pressure off of the joints through daily activity. So don't dodge doing any strength training because of having arthritis. Just start light and progress your way up to heavier weights when you become more comfortable. Lastly, don't forget to stretch.

Take these tips to heart if you want to mitigate the pain of arthritis! If you would like additional tips to help you feel better on a daily basis, please don't hesitate to contact us!




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