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5 Exercises for Arthritis Pain Relief

Introduction

Whether we would like to admit it or not, our bodies are not able to keep up with the youthfulness of our minds forever. As we grow older, we have aches and pains that stem from various issues like arthritis.

Naturally, we associate the idea of arthritis with senior citizens, but individuals of any age can experience inflamed joints – even babies.

Due to this phenomenon being experienced by a wide range of people, exploration led to discovering exercises that ease pain caused by arthritis. Easy going and low-intensity exercise helps those with arthritis lead a life filled with less pain.

Unfortunately, those with severe arthritis may need to see if they qualify for 500,000 life insurance with no exam because regular insurance may reject them. Additionally, they may have to look into resources that provide long-term care because their condition prevents them from being able to function on their own.

However, exercising can prevent cases from getting this severe.

According to the Mayo Clinic, "Exercise is crucial for people with arthritis. It increases strength and flexibility, reduces joint pain, and helps combat fatigue." The best part is that you do not have to overexert yourself by performing hard-core workouts to see the benefits of exercising. 

Is exercising important for arthritis?

Before we dive into the exact exercises that can help alleviate pain caused by arthritis, you should first understand why exercise is so important.

For starters, exercising promotes and increases the health of your joints and limbs. Arthritis is the inflammation of joints, so exercising directly impacts the part of your body that is symptomatic.

When people consider exercise, they tend to think about how workouts can lead to being sore after working out. This idea draws people with arthritis away from exercises because they believe that it will only make their symptoms worse. That is not true. Arthritis pain is worse when you do nothing.

Lack of movement leads to stiff joints, which enhances the pain. Exercising with arthritis diminishes the onset of stiffness, strengthens muscles surrounding your joints, and helps keep up your bone strength.

Of course, if you decide not to exercise as a treatment, you can partake in other methods to deal with arthritis pain. But frequently exercising can eliminate the presence of pain all together.

As you read through the list of exercises and decide which are the best fit for you, remember to consult with your doctor before starting them.

Exercise #1– Walking to Ease Knee Pain 

Stretching bands

Walking is an excellent way to loosen your muscles around your joints. It also strengthens both your muscles and bones. Almost everyone can easily walk without pain, which makes it a common exercise.

Aside from helping ease pain caused by arthritis, walking has many other benefits. Walking can increase your pulmonary and cardiovascular (lung and heart) fitness, help manage high blood pressure, and reduce body fat.

If you do not regularly participate in aerobic activity, then it may take longer to build up your endurance. Start walking 10-15 minutes a day for three to five days a week. You will eventually be able to walk for 30 minutes or more on those days.

For those who have limited mobility because of arthritis, there are guides to finding devices that can help you get from point A to point B painlessly. There are additional exercises that can help you gradually increase your mobility by loosening up your muscles and joints.

Exercise #2 – Relaxation Yoga for Seniors

With patience and determination, yoga is something that anyone can master — or at least comprehend on a novice level. Yoga is excellent for people with arthritis because it helps reduce inflammation in joints and enhances one's immune system.

Though general yoga is good for arthritis cases, Vinyasa yoga (hot yoga) and power yoga are more aggressive forms of yoga. They can potentially cause more harm than good.

Other forms of yoga provide a gentle stretch, restoring the resilience and mobility to your muscles and joints. If you decide to try the yoga route, be sure to work with a certified yoga specialist. 

Senior woman doing yoga

Exercise #3 – Water Aerobics for Arthritis

Water aerobics for arthritis

Doing your workout in water is ideal for individuals with an increased level of pain. In a shallow-water pool (no more than 4 feet deep), you can walk from one end to the other, use an underwater treadmill, or perform standing side lunges.

The water makes moving while exercising easy because it mitigates the pressure from your joints and muscles. The science behind the lightness you feel while in water makes this exercise perfect for anyone with arthritis.

There are usually local classes for these types of exercises, especially during the summer. Doing water aerobics with a group of people like friends or associates can alleviate the anxiety sometimes found with exercising.

For an added exercise, if the water is particularly cold, you can spend a few moments in a hot tub afterward to act as a hot and cold therapy method.  

Exercise #4 – Chair Stand-Up Exercise for Arthritis Pain in Lower Body

Chair Stand-Up Exercise for Arthritis Pain in Lower Body

This exercise is as simple as it can get, and it is best for people who experience pain around their knees. It can also be beneficial for people with stiff wrists and elbows. To perform this exercise, you sit, stand, and sit back down in an average height chair.

A key thing to note is that you do not throw yourself into the chair as if you are sitting casually or like any other time you are sitting down. You pace yourself going up and down, and you gently settle into the seat of your chair. The pace depends on what is best for you, but it is essential to be gentle with your body.

As you are attentively guiding yourself up and down, you will notice if this exercise is too strenuous or not. If it is a bit too challenging, you can trade your chair out for one taller. Switch out for a shorter chair if it is too easy.

If you perform this exercise 12-15 times a day, your legs will become stronger. As they grow stronger, you will find yourself using the muscle in your legs instead of your arms to go up and down into the chair.  

Exercise #5 – Cycling Exercise for Beginners

Cycling for arthritis pain relief

Cycling can be done indoors on a stationary bike or outdoors on an actual bicycle. Biking is excellent if one has ankle, knee, or feet problems. It is crucial to make sure the bike you are riding sits upright, or it can cause more harm to other places on your body.

This exercise is high intensity, but it avoids heavy pressure from being pushed onto your joints, unlike other high-intensity workouts. While loosening your feet and the joints in your ankles and knees, cycling also strengthens your thigh and calf muscles.

Just like walking, if you are new to aerobics and high-intensity exercise, you should start at 10 minutes and then work your way up to 30 or more minutes of cycling.  

Final Tips for Easing Arthritis Pain

While exercising, it is beyond essential to maintain a low impact. If you are too rough or aggressive, you can hurt yourself more and end with your joints aching worse. It is best to do exercises that do not put too much pressure on your body and are low-intensity.

When maintaining a low impact, you should move gently, and at a steady pace that is best for you. If you need to go slow, then do so, but generally, keep the pace at a moderate level.

Alternate between heat and ice after working out. Warm towels, a warm shower, and a hot pack can relax your joints and muscles, helping diminish pain. The ice eliminates any swelling within and around your joints.

Exercising is a great way to manage pain from arthritis, but there are also tools that can help. Alternating between tools and exercising can make your lifestyle easier and less painful. 

About the Author

Imani Francies writes and researches for the insurance comparison site, EffortlessInsurance.com. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Film and Media and specializes in various forms of media marketing. 

About Carex Health Brands

Carex is your one-stop shop for home medical equipment and for products that assist caregivers with providing the best possible support and care for their loved ones. Carex Health Brands has been the branded leader in in-home, self-care medical products for over 35 years. Our goal is to improve the lives of our customers by bring them quality products that bring dignity back to their lives. With our three nationally distributed brands, Carex Health Brands serves national, regional and independent food, drug and mass retailers along with wholesalers, distributors and medical dealers.

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