If you have arthritis or osteoarthritis you know how your joints can hurt. Aches and pains galore. You may often wonder whether you should be moving them or not. However research has shown that moving the joints is best. Staying active is the key. You want to move those joints as much as possible. Move around throughout the day and don’t sit for endless hours.
By moving your body you increase the blood flow which helps to lubricate the joints which helps in reducing or relieving pain. Yes many people with arthritis are trying to figure out ways to lubricate the joints. And the easiest way is to get the blood moving. It will also help your brain and may help prevent dementia.
When you get up in the morning you may be stiff. But as soon as you move around you get the blood flowing and lubricating the joints. Of course moving will also help with weight loss and help if you have weight problems also. And the blood moving to your brain will help you think better and then think even more about moving!
1. You want to think about low impact first of all. You don’t want to jar the joints yet you want to get them moving. For the best cardio you want to keep one foot on the ground at all times. The best exercise would be walking or snowshoeing.
If your arthritis pain is severe you can try swimming or water aerobics. Water helps eliminate impact and helps soothe joints. Try to find salt water pools instead of chemical-laden chlorine pools. Many clubs are going to salt water pools these days. Riding a bike is another good low impact exercise activity. You can actually burn 500 calories an hour while cycling. If you aren’t physically capable of riding a bike then try a recumbent bike. Especially if you have back pain or back problems or injuries. Recumbent bikes are fun and some can be close to the floor if that’s a requirement.
2. Keeping steady. You want to avoid activity that has a lot of pivots, turns stops and starts. Tennis can be jarring but is an excellent lifetime activity if you just take it slow and easy. Many arthritics play tennis and just play a slower game. If you’ve never learned it’s never too late. There are even tennis tournaments for people in their nineties.
If you’re so inclined, cross country skiing or snowshoeing burn as many calories as jogging and without the stress. For inside activities that will help the joints use an elliptical machine. It provides very little impact and is safe for your joints. Joints absorb shock so avoid any jarring in whatever sport or activity you participate in.
3. Strengthen you joints. You want to build up and tone the muscles that surround your affected joints. These could be muscles in the back, knees or hips for example. You can get significant arthritis pain relief and pain reduction by improving your posture and your overall joint mobility.
If you follow some of the tips in this article and get your body moving as much as possible, you’ll start to notice less stiffness and joint pain and enjoy significant arthritis pain relief. There are many other exercises you can do to help lubricate the joints. Keep moving is the most important advice for anyone with joint pain or arthritis. Remember that moving the body is the best joint lubricant.
Dr. Paul Burns is a Chiropractor specializing in pain management and sports injuries. He has worked with many college and pro teams, including the Denver Broncos, the ATP and Wrangler Sports. His multidisciplinary practice is located in the Denver Tech Center and offers the latest in evidenced based practice methodology, techniques and technology.
For more information, visit www.DrPaulBurns.com and/or call 303-694-9759.