Aching joints? Swollen joints? Rheumatism? Uneasiness around? Rheumatoid arthritis is a condition that affects the joints where you feel pain in the area. One thing that can ease these conditions is exercise! Ironic but true, the more you move, the better you feel! Exercise builds up stamina, makes you feel fresh and soothes the soreness which your joints are carrying. Simple exercises like walking, swimming and warm water aerobics go a long way.
Well begun is half done!
Plan your regime. You may be tempted to do it all in a day, but hold on, start slow and go gradual for sustained results.
No time for a walk? Even if it’s 5 minutes a day, it will still have an effect. Go slow and listen to your body. If it is telling you to stop, stop and carry on from there the next day. Start with 5 minutes a day on alternate days or 5 days a week. It’s important to be moving even if it is just a little. Gradually increase the time to 6 minutes a day after 2 weeks – this sustained approach is important for long lasting results.
An ideal exercise regime is one that involves aerobics, strength training and flexibility. They strengthen your bones and prevent Osteoporosis/brittle bones. As a great bonus, such a regime will help you shed any extra pounds which can contribute to having joint pains.
Aerobics: Swimming, walking and dancing have low to medium impact on your joints; warm water aerobics will also sooth your aches. Make sure to start all exercises with a slow warm-up!
Strength training: Lifting light weights a few times a day and increasing the load gradually can help you increase your muscle mass.
Flexibility: Any flexibility exercise that move your joints and muscles will reduce the stiffness.
8 Simple Toe-to-Top home exercises:
- Balance on one foot and hold for 5 to 10 seconds and repeat on the other foot.
- Flex your toes, then relax.
- Sit on a couch, drop a towel on the floor and then pull it to you with your toes.
- Fill a bowl with raw grains (such as rice), place one hand in and move your fingers the same way you would play a piano. This is a great exercise to do whilst watching television and relaxing.
- Work your back by doing cat stretches. Get on all fours. Round your back outwards, back reaching toward the sky. Release and return to original position.
- Bend your elbows, and bring your palms to your shoulders then bring them back gradually.
- Stretch your hands out, palms at eye level, raise your hands above your head, fingers reaching for the sky. This will exercise your shoulders.
- Make circles with your neck.
These simple steps will help limber up your joints! There may be days where you feel too much pain to exercise, take a break or use our pain relief products to support! It is important to balance both rest and exercise so as not to exert your body.
Group up with like-minded people. It is easier to achieve your goals with a companion especially with those of similar circumstances. It is a motivating and fruitful journey together. Joining a gym may be a good idea if the fitness environment boosts you to stick to your workouts.
Try opting for one on your way to work or daily tasks; you are more likely to stop by the gym and work out.
It’s a great idea to consult your physician for a personalised plan. A doctor/ therapist/ trainer will be able to gauge your progress and fine tune your exercise regime accordingly. Where you end up is more important than where you start!