From arthritis and fibromyalgia to sprains and strains, there are lots of reasons why you may be limping through life with joint pain. And because of that pain, you’re likely having trouble exercising. Without exercise, the rest of your health can suffer.
We don’t want you to fall into a cycle of joint pain that leads to a sedentary lifestyle. So, our experts at Nebben Physical Medicine are here to share a few practical strategies you can use to get back to working out even when you have joint pain.
When your joints are throbbing and stiff, the last thing on your mind is moving more than you have to. You might not realize that regular exercise is one of the best things you can do to manage joint pain.
Contrary to popular belief, exercise doesn’t exacerbate joint pain. Rather, it helps relieve it by strengthening the surrounding muscles, fortifying your bones, boosting your energy, helping you sleep better at night, and improving your overall health and wellness.
Not sure how to get started? Here are a few things to consider when exercising with joint pain.
There are plenty of workout videos and resources online, but it’s never a good idea to jump into an exercise program without consulting your doctor. Unlike a social media fitness guru, we can help make sure that your exercise plan is right for you.
Yes, exercise is great for joint pain, but if you don’t take the necessary steps to protect your joints, you could do more harm than good. Before you get moving, make sure you stretch properly. You may also consider using heat therapy to loosen up your joints and muscles.
During your workout, go slowly and move gently through your movements. Afterward, apply ice or a cold compress for 20 minutes to control swelling.
Your body is wise and has an uncanny ability to tell you what it needs. Be aware of signs of workout-related discomfort. If you notice a certain movement causes pain, stop what you’re doing. Ignore these warning signs, and you risk doing more damage to your joints.
Living with joint pain means making adjustments to your routine — and your workouts are no exception. Consider hopping in the pool when you exercise. Even during an intense workout, being in the water eliminates most of the stress on your joints.
You don’t have to embrace cross-training, marathons, or bodybuilding to get a good workout. Low-impact games like bocce ball, golf, and even shuffleboard get you on your feet and work different muscle groups. That goes a long way to keeping your joints healthy.
Walking doesn’t count as exercise, right? Wrong. A brisk walk around the block or on your treadmill or elliptical machine is one of the easiest ways to stay active and improve joint health.
Whether you’re out on the trail or in the gym on a stationary bike, cycling works your lower body muscles, gets your heart rate up, and keeps your joints safe.
To really keep the stress off your joints while you work out, consider yoga, pilates, or tai chi. These bodyweight exercises target almost every part of your body and offer optimal joint protection.
If you’d like more information about joint-friendly exercises or if you’d like to explore your other treatment options, don’t hesitate to request an appointment online or over the phone at our Clarksville, Tennessee, office today.