Improve Your Life…
Exercises Can Ease Osteoarthritis Pain
While you may worry that exercising with osteoarthritis (OA) could harm your joints and cause more pain! research shows that people can and should exercise when they have osteoarthritis.
In fact, exercise is considered the most effective, non-drug treatment for reducing pain and improving movement in patients with osteoarthritis.
- Exercise maintains the joint’s full range of motion.
- Exercise strengthens the muscles that support the joint.
- Strong muscles help the joint absorb shock.
- Reduces joint stiffness
- Builds flexibility and endurance.
- Improves your mood and self-esteem.
- Helps you sleep better.
- Keeps weight under control.
- Gives you more energy.
Before you start exercising
- First, talk to your doctor about the best types of exercise for you.
- It is best to start slowly.
- It’s always smart to start your workout with a warm-up. But people with OA may want go one step further to warm their muscles. Taking a warm bath or applying heat packs to joints may be helpful before you work out.
Best exercises for you
Aerobic/endurance exercise Aerobic exercise strengthen the heart, make the lungs more efficient reduces fatigue and builds stamina, while helping control weight by increasing the number of calories the body uses. Examples of this type of exercise includes walking, jogging, bicycling, swimming or using the elliptical machine.
Walking is always a good idea. Free and easy on the joints, it improves circulation, lowers blood pressure and, strengthens the heart. It also lowers the risk of fractures (by stopping or slowing down the loss of bone mass) and tones muscles that support joints.
Strengthening exercises These exercises help maintain and improve muscle strength. Strong muscles can support and protect joints that are affected by arthritis.
Range of motion or flexibility exercises These exercises include gentle stretching and movements that take joints through their full span. Doing these exercises regularly can help improve the flexibility in the joints. and maintain your ability to move your joints through the full motion they were designed to achieve.
water exercises. Regular aquatic exercise can help relieve pain and improve daily function in people with hip and knee OA.These are particularly helpful for people just beginning to exercise as well as those who are overweight.
water exercises do not involve swimming, rather they are performed while standing in about shoulder-height water. The water’s buoyancy helps relieve the pressure of your body’s weight on the affected joints (hips and knees in particular), while providing resistance for your muscles to get stronger.
Yoga. Regular yoga can help improve flexibility of the joints, strengthen muscles, and lessen pain. Some yoga positions can add strain to your hips, so if you feel discomfort, ask your instructor for modifications.