Five Easy Ways to Get Active in Arthritis

ID-100210935Arthritis is a common health problem, especially among elderly. In many patients with arthritis, the pain may be so severe that movements become difficult. Obesity increase risk of arthritis as it puts extra pressure on the joints. Exercise can be helpful in arthritis by reducing weight and by improving joint mobility, which is usually hampered in arthritis. However, do not get discouraged if you are suffering from arthritis and your mobility is restricted. It can certainly be improved.

Join a group with similar problem:

Joining a group with similar problem, i.e. arthritis can be of great benefit. It can be a great motivator. You can share your experience and learn from other’s experience. You can get motivated by each other. Look for arthritis clinics, community centers, physical therapy clinics, and gyms. Joining a group is an easy way to get active and mobile for arthritis patients, which is a chronic pain condition, which tend to worsen with time.

Yoga for arthritis:

Yoga can be of great benefit for arthritis patients. Because yoga help to stretch whole body, especially some joints. Yoga is also good for general health and wellbeing. Although there are only few studies done about benefits of yoga in arthritis, still most arthritis clinics suggest yoga for overall benefit in arthritis.

Warming up for arthritis:

Before you start exercise (if you are suffering from arthritis), it is important to warm your joints. Generally 20 minutes warming (joint warming) with hot packs, warm towel etc. is recommended. Warming should be moderate intensity and not too warm/hot to be painful. After exercise, it should be followed up by cooling down joints with ice packs, here also it should be moderate intensity.

Plan big, but start small:

There is a Chinese phrase: “journey of thousand miles start with a single step”. You too should plan big but start small. Start exercise, but gradually. Start with few minutes daily of low intensity or mild exercise, e.g. 10 minutes and gradually increase duration and intensity of exercise. Your joints will adapt well if you increase gradually. Do aerobic exercise too for flexibility. Exercise will help in reducing body weight and joint flexibility. Aim of exercise should be flexibility of joints and body as whole, strength, and good cardiovascular health.

Discuss with your doctor first:

Before you start exercise or plan to get active and become mobile, talk to your doctor in detail. Your doctor can be of great help in planning your exercise regimen, provide guidance about exercise time and in management of post exercise pain. Do not ignore advice of your doctor.

Image courtesy of [khunaspix] at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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