How Exercise Benefits Arthritis Patients

Regular exercise benefits everyone by increasing your stamina and energy. If you have arthritis it is especially important to exercise regularly. Not only will you reduce your risk of other diseases; but your joints and muscles will feel better and you will feel more energized.

Arthritis is a common reason for people to give up exercising but inactivity only increases the stiffness and fatigue associated with the disease. Regular exercise will not only improve joint circulation and decrease joint swelling but it also keeps the cartilage and bones healthy.

By understanding physical fitness and exercise you’ll not only feel better; you will improve your health and also manage your arthritis. If you are determined to live a healthier and more productive life and not be at the mercy of arthritis, work out with some of these exercises.

Flexibility Exercises

Flexibility exercises, or range of motion exercises are the foundation of any exercise program. They are especially important for the person with arthritis. The purpose is to increase flexibility in the joints and muscles.

Flexibility exercises should be done slowly and should be performed before more vigorous exercises. Before doing other exercises work up to fifteen minutes with the flexibility exercises so that you will have the endurance needed for strengthening and aerobic exercise.

Strengthening Exercises

Strengthening exercises are also known as resistance exercises. The lack of exercise causes muscles to become weak.

If your muscles are strong, they will be able to absorb shock and support the joints. Having strong muscles is necessary to perform many of our daily tasks. Gradually increase your strengthening exercises so that you are not causing your muscles to become sore after you exercise.

Aerobic Exercises

Aerobic exercises can include walking, hiking, swimming, skating, mowing the lawn, bicycling, playing golf or doing any physical exercise where you are continually moving your legs and arms.

Including aerobics into your fitness program puts you at less risk of developing heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes. It is the kind of exercise that will help control your weight, strengthen you bones, decreases stress and makes you more energetic. At the same time, it will increase flexibility and improves mobility.

If you are not currently following an exercise program you don’t have to come up with a new exercise to do right away. Just find ways to add more physical activity to your regular daily routines. You could start by taking short ten minute walks three times a day; building your exercise up to thirty minutes. Once you accomplish this; you will be ready to start on other methods of aerobic exercise.

You need to make sure you are exercising on a regular basis and gradually increase the time so that you are not getting exhausted or causing your muscles and joints to become painful by trying to do too much too fast.

When you begin any aerobic exercise it is important that you warm-up. This will raise the temperature in your muscles and joints, increases circulation and flexibility and prepares your heart to work harder. An example of a warm-up routine, if you are walking; would be to walk slowly for ten to fifteen minutes before getting into more vigorous walking.

The cool-down period is important as well. After you have been vigorously walking let your body slow down for the last ten minutes, so that your heart rate slows and you lose some of the heat that you generated by walking vigorously. Slow down to a casual stroll.

Whatever exercise program you decide is best for you, remember to work up to the thirty minutes per day slowly and be consistent for at least three to four days a week.

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