Do you suffer from a joint condition and worry that it could get worse? You don’t have to resign yourself to pain and stiffness – exercise can be a major help in managing your symptoms. Recent medical studies have found that physical activity is one of the best ways not only to manage existing joint conditions but to prevent them as well. In addition, exercise can help with your mental health, which is a common area that those with long-term conditions struggle with.
In this blog post, we’ll look at how you can use exercise as a way of managing your health and boosting your mood.
Start by gradually adding some low-impact exercises to your routine
As joint conditions progress, they can cause erosion and restrict your range of motion. Losing flexibility and full movement in your body can be extremely frustrating and debilitating. Arthritis-associated conditions such as gout can make some movements painful and reduce your strength and balance.
While it isn’t a magic cure, exercising can help to strengthen the supporting muscles around your joints, which will in turn reduce the stress on your joints when you use them. Exercising can also maintain your bone density and strength, reducing the risk of osteoporosis.
Low-impact activities like swimming or cycling are brilliant ways to get moving without further damaging your joints. As well as cardio, you can practice easy-level yoga or pilates to improve your posture and balance, which can help to prevent falls and further joint damage.
Increase your exercise at a sustainable pace
It can be tempting to jump in and commit yourself to going to the gym every day, but in reality, this sort of schedule isn’t likely to last. Not only will it require a lot of dedication, but it doesn’t account for the rest periods that your joints need if the exercise is to benefit rather than hinder you.
Instead, you should aim to build up exercise over a longer period of time, balancing between cardio and strength training. It’s also important to recognize that even the best training schedules don’t always go to plan – listen to your body, and adapt accordingly. Going for a walk for 10 minutes is far better than a spinning session if your joints are feeling sore.
If you have regular flare-ups that make it hard for you to leave the house, consider investing in some basic equipment for your home. Virtual exercise classes can be a great way to get the benefit of instructor-led tuition but from the comfort of your living room.
See a professional for personalized advice
Sometimes, it can be worth speaking to either a medical professional or a personal trainer to check which types of exercise are suitable for your pre-existing condition. The last thing you want to do is make it worse, and they can help you with choosing the right workout for you, as well as any gear you need.
Whatever you choose, you’re sure to see the benefits that come with increasing your exercise routine.
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