If you suffer from arthritis, you do not have to give up on exercise. Arthritis can affect people of all ages, whether you are 25 or 75. It's possible to stay physically fit even though your body is plagued by pain and discomfort.
Although you may not be able to participate in all the sports you used to enjoy, you should not let your arthritis prevent you from staying physically active.
1. Stretching Is Key
Those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis will find that stretching is vitally important to a successful workout. Stretch before each exercise session. Stretching helps your joints and muscles respond much better to physical activity. Even something as simple as gardening counts as exercise. Just be sure to stretch out your knees, hips and ankles before you get down and dirty. Stretching after exercise is also prudent. Post-exercise stretching will ward off stiffness and reduce the odds of a limited range of motion.
2. Give Aquatic Sports A Shot
Aquatic sports are some of the best ways for arthritis sufferers to remain physically active. Even if you simply walk in water that is waist-deep, you will burn calories and increase your heart rate. Water is ideal for arthritis sufferers as it decreases the weight put on joints by upwards of 50 percent. If you aren't sure where to start with water sports, sign up for a class conducted at your local pool to learn proper form.
3. Transition To Low-Impact Aerobic Exercises
Arthritis pain can be minimized by reducing the impact on your joints. Segue into low-impact aerobic exercises like light walking, water exercises, riding a stationary bike or even slow dancing. Avoid high-impact aerobic exercises and sports like basketball that require sudden stops, starts and changes of direction.
4. Engage In Tai Chi Exercises
The days of going all out at the gym or on the court may no longer be possible. This is the time to transition to exercises that feature slow movements. Tai Chi is the perfect exercise for those afflicted with arthritis. Its deliberate flowing movements will help you maintain your mobility and improve your quality of life. There is a good chance that a Tai Chi program is offered in your community. Sign up and you will immediately fall in love with the program's focus on slow physical motions, regular breathing and improved mental focus. Tai Chi might even relieve your stiffness to boot.
Exercising with arthritis is a challenge that you should not attempt to overcome on your own. Ralph Roberts Personal Training has experience working with clients with arthritis and can create a custom workout plan just for you. Contact Ralph Roberts today for a free personal training session.