There are over 100 conditions that fall under the umbrella of arthritis. Some are linked to mechanical wear and tear of the joints and cartilage, while others are linked to autoimmune issues and infections.
Exercise can halt, slow, or delay the onset of symptoms, but exercise is often made more difficult by the disease itself. Sufferers of arthritis often experience pain and stiffness, and these symptoms may discourage them from becoming more active.
A sedentary lifestyle may provide some short-term relief, especially after an acute episode of arthritis. However, as time goes by, a lack of exercise can lead to weight gain, which increases the load on the joints.
Here at The Painless Center, Dr. Jason Chiu understands how arthritis can get in the way of exercising. He helps his patients improve their mobility and enables them to lead happier, more active lifestyles.
Below, we asked Dr. Chiu to share a few tips on adjusting your exercise regimen after an arthritis diagnosis.
1. Start with a few gentle stretches
Before beginning any workout, ease into it by stretching. You can do some of your stretches from your bed by drawing your knees up to your chest and holding them for a minute. You can then stretch your hips by standing up and reaching down towards your toes.
2. Avoid high-impact activities
High-impact activities such as running, jogging, and jumping rope pressure your joints.
However, activities like swimming are ideal for people with arthritis. Water suspends your joints, allowing you to exercise with a decreased risk for pain.
You can also use elliptical machines to strengthen your leg muscles. Ellipticals enable you to avoid slamming your feet against the ground.
3. Give yoga a try
Due to its slow, low-impact nature, Yoga provides many benefits to arthritis sufferers. You can find Yoga classes at any level.
Some classes are designed with specific goals, such as increased strength or improved flexibility and range of motion.
4. Invest in a bicycle
Cycling is a great exercise, as sitting down takes some pressure off your joints. It allows you to build muscles in your thighs and calves.
Learn more about managing your arthritis
If home exercises fail to bring you relief, you can opt for joint injections offered by Dr. Chiu to relieve your symptoms.
Are you looking for a more permanent solution? Dr. Chiu also offers radio ablation. With this procedure, Dr. Chiu destroys the nerve fibers responsible for sending pain signals to the brain.
Contact us to schedule an appointment and get expert advice on managing your arthritis.