Arthritis is one of the most painful conditions one can live with. Osteoarthritis, a type of arthritis, is caused by the wear and tear of the cartilage around the bones in the joints area. This leads to pain and stiffness. Some of the major causes of arthritis include age, obesity and cartilage damage due to injuries. This is why exercise is recommended as a preventive measure for arthritis. Exercise can help prevent bone loss, keep the joints functioning, maintain your weight and fitness, improve flexibility and also promote faster recovery in case of injuries. Exercise can also be used as an effective tool to reduce the inflammation of the joints caused by arthritis and help you deal better with the condition so you are able to carry out your day-to-day activities.
How exercise can help those with arthritis
A new research says that exercise can suppress the action of the inflammatory molecules which cause osteoarthritis and prevent articular cartilage damage. This is why doctors say that it is important to keep moving to those suffering from arthritis. But it is important to know which exercises to perform and how to perform them. It is always recommended that you do exercises with a trained fitness instructor who knows about exercising with arthritis. Here are some of the best exercises you can try doing, under guidance. Make sure you do these exercises slowly and on days when you don’t have debilitating pain.
For those with hand arthritis: You can try doing knuckle bending and finger stretching. For knuckle bending, hold the knuckles of one hand lightly in your other hand and gently stretch behind. Stretch as much as possible and release. For stretching fingers, just keep your hands on a table with palms down and spread your fingers. Take each finger and stretch it behind, hold it for some time and then release. Do this with each finger.
Walking: Walk at your normal speed for about half an hour every day. Wear comfortable shoes and don’t try brisk walking to avoid sprains and strain on your joints. The idea is to keep the joints moving.
Swimming and other water exercises: Exercising in water is excellent for those with arthritis. Underwater, the pressure on your joints is less which means that you can carry movements without as much strain or pain as you would experience on land. Try aqua yoga or aqua aerobics in a swimming pool or just regular swimming laps.