Exercising to Prevent Arthritis: A Guide for People with Arthritis

Exercise is essential for people with arthritis, as it increases strength and makes movement easier. It can also reduce joint pain and combat tiredness. Regular physical activity can keep the muscles surrounding affected joints strong, reduce bone loss, and help control joint swelling and pain. Exercise replenishes joint cartilage lubrication and reduces stiffness and pain, as well as increasing energy and endurance by reducing fatigue and improving sleep.

Not only does exercise relieve the stress of excess joint weight, it also strengthens the muscles surrounding the joints, stabilizing them and protecting them from wear and tear. The three main types of arthritis are osteoarthritis (OA), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), and psoriatic arthritis (PsA). It's easy to understand why some people with arthritis mistakenly perceive that all physical activity is undesirable, will only exacerbate or worsen their arthritis, and should be minimized. However, moderate exercise can help relieve joint pain and stiffness, as well as protect and support joints.

The Arthritis Foundation focuses on finding a cure and defending the fight against arthritis with information, advocacy, science, and community that change lives. The Arthritis Foundation's JA camp programs give children with arthritis and related childhood rheumatic diseases an opportunity to create lasting memories. Physical activity can also delay the onset of an arthritis-related disability and help people with arthritis manage other chronic conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease, and obesity. Therefore, it's important to understand how to safely increase physical activity for people with arthritis.

When exercising with arthritis, it's important to start slowly and gradually increase intensity over time. Low-impact activities such as swimming or walking are great options for people with arthritis. It's also important to focus on range-of-motion exercises that help maintain flexibility in the joints. Additionally, strengthening exercises can help build muscle around the joints to provide support.

It's also important to pay attention to your body when exercising with arthritis. If you experience any pain or discomfort during exercise, stop immediately and rest until the pain subsides. Additionally, it's important to take breaks throughout your workout routine to avoid overworking your joints. Finally, it's important to remember that exercise is just one part of managing arthritis symptoms.

Eating a healthy diet full of anti-inflammatory foods can also help reduce joint pain and inflammation associated with arthritis. Additionally, getting enough sleep is essential for managing pain levels.

Jill Sizemore
Jill Sizemore

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