It is really important for those with arthritis to include exercise in their lifestyle. Exercise increases strength and flexibility, reduces joint pain, and helps combat fatigue. The thought of getting up and taking a walk or swimming a few laps might not be what you're thinking of when stiff and painful joints are already bogging you down, however you don't need to run a marathon or swim like and Olympic athlete to experience the benefits of exercise. Moderate exercise is all you need to help ease the pain and stiffness of arthritis and to help you maintain a healthy weight.
Lack of exercise can make your joints more painful and stiff. It is important to keep muscles and surround tissues strong to support your bones. Lack of exercise weakens the supporting muscles making you more susceptible to bone breaks.
Before beginning an exercise program talk to your doctor about how you can work it in with your current treatment program and what types of exercises would be best for you depending on the type of arthritis and the joints involved.
Along with your current treatment program, exercise can help to strengthen the muscles around your joints, help you maintain bone strength, give you more strength and energy to get you through your day, make it easier to get a good nights sleep, help you control your weight, make you feel better about yourself and improve your well-being.
Exercise keeps you moving when arthritis threatens to immobilize you.
Corinna Maggy is a National Academy of Sports Medicine certified personal trainer and corrective exercise specialist. She can be reached at Mountain Riders at 324-9900 or firstname.lastname@example.org. The information contained within Health Matters is not a substitute for professional medical examination, diagnosis or treatment. Always consult your physician before starting an exercise program or beginning any nutritional regimen.