When we hear the word arthritis, the first image that comes to our mind are the aching knees of grandma. This dated notion, however, does not hold true anymore. Arthritis, as a whole, encompasses over 150 conditions. A more accurate description of this term would be musculoskeletal conditions. These conditions largely affect the muscles, bones and joints of the body.
The Musculoskeletal System
To understand better how arthritis affects your body, it is important to know its localized effects on various important aspects of the human body. Arthritis has been commonly found to be affecting the joints. A joint allows for movement between two bone structures. The structure covering these areas is known as cartilage.
It is important in absorbing shock, and in saving bones from friction. Ligaments, on the other hand, hold the bone in the joint in place by connecting them to one another. The bones and the muscles are connected with one another with the help of tendons. When the muscles contract they cause a pull on the bones making them move.
The way that arthritis affects these parts of your body will also depend largely on your lifestyle. This condition can, in a great part, affect your bones, joints, and cartilage as well as surrounding structures. Arthritis can cause pain, stiffness, inflammation, in one or more joints or muscles. It has been found that regular exercise can definitely alleviate some of the symptoms and pain.
Here’s How Exercise Helps Those With Arthritis
- Regular exercise can work very well in helping you get back to a painless functioning and daily routine.
- Exercise can aid joint lubrication and nourishment
- It can relieve your joints of pain and stiffness
- It is crucial in improving flexibility
- Regular exercise is very helpful in building muscle strength
- Exercising on a regular basis helps in improving your balance
- Working out and exercising can help you sleep better
- The best part of exercising regularly is that it improves your posture
- Exercise has been found to increase and maintain one’s bone density
- The endorphins released during exercise can alleviate stress levels and improve your mood
- It also helps in reducing your weight and thus reducing the stress on your joints
- Best Exercises for Arthritis Affected Individuals
Walking in waist deep water is considered to cause less impact on the joints, reducing it by almost 50 percent as compared to walking on land. It is important, however, to have an instructor on hand to teach you the right form before you begin this exercise. Those that have just come back from a surgery need to ensure that their incision has healed beyond all doubt before venturing into the water. Also, it is very easy to get carried away when working out in the water. Make sure that you are not over-exerting yourself.
Water exercises are considered to be the best for people who are suffering from arthritis. There is hardly any impact and moreover, the joints are provided a complete range of motion. It is important, however, to not indulge in swimming styles that cause unnecessary range of motion for your body. If you are facing issues in your hips or lower body joints the breast stroke is probably not for you.
This is a game that involves a great deal of walking. Moreover, if done right, it can be a great workout for your lower and upper body alike. If you are going to be playing golf, it is best if you wear shoes with soft spikes instead of metal spikes to avoid tripping. It is also important to use light-weight clubs to reduce the stress on your body.
This is one form of exercise that is perfect for everyone, is low impact, and has wonderful overall benefits for your body. Not only is it a great relaxation technique, it also promotes a healthier immune system and is a great way to strengthen your joints. It is, however, a wise idea to steer clear of power yoga and other new-fangled yoga variants. Stick with classical yoga poses done with good trainers for the best results.
This is a wonderful way to strengthen your core and improve your overall balance. Moreover, it is also a great exercise to help strengthen the muscles that support your joints. It is important that this exercise is performed under guidance as there are chances that doing it by yourself may strain your body in an unhealthy fashion.
This is a low impact exercise that is considered to be great for your balance and core strength. It involves slow smooth movements that strengthen the body, reduce pain and improve your general mobility. It is said that you shouldn’t practice Tai Chi for more than the amount of time you can walk comfortably. Doing it for 20 to 40 minutes is ideal.
It is important to understand one’s limits when doing weights. But as a whole, weights are considered to be a great way to strengthen your muscles and joints. Start by doing simple bicep curls, but make sure that you are not over-exerting yourself. It is best if you do this form of exercise with an instructor at hand.
This a low-impact high-intensity exercise, and when done right it is an amazing way to make sure that your lower body joints are strengthened. Cycling helps in strengthening your quads and knee joints. Try starting with 10 minutes for a stretch you can then extend this as your strength increases.
This machine is a great way to exercise, although it is not something that is advisable for novices. It is a great cardiovascular workout. When done with the right instruction it can be a great way to build strength as well as stamina.
There are a number of exercises that are perfect for those recovering from arthritis, or for those dealing with it. Something as simple as walking regularly can also be a great way for someone to keep up their joint strength. It is important, however, to keep at a form of exercise for a certain duration to see the results.