Home Diseases Guide 10 Ways to stay active with osteoarthritis

10 Ways to stay active with osteoarthritis

One in five adults in United States suffers from osteoarthritis; in fact, it affects women more than men. Joint pain can inhibit your normal lifestyle and you may not be able to do the activities that you had been doing with ease. Osteoarthritis and exercise may not be a perfect match, but an active lifestyle can definitely help to improve your joint pain. The arthritic joints do benefit a lot from these activities but you should be aware of the limit. You must avoid any weight-bearing exercises. We will discuss here the 10 best ways to stay active with osteoarthritis.

Physical therapy for osteoarthritis

A large number of people suffer from knee osteoarthritis. These people deal with painful issues like knee pain, stiffness and sensory abnormalities. The knee is in real bad shape and prevents people from exercising. But physical therapists can devise a treatment program to overcome these obstacles and achieve the desired results from a physical activity program.

Stay active in kitchen

A mere joint pain should not limit your mobility inside the kitchen. Just reorganize all essential things so that they are between the shoulder and thigh height. You will be able to get the required things easily without having to bend. You can even make a counter at thigh height so that rolling the dough and stirring become easier. Before you start cooking, always prepare a strategy so that you do not have to carry heavy items across the kitchen.

Stop reaching above your head

When you are suffering from osteoarthritis, you should take care not to reach for anything above your head. If you want to access any high cabinet, then you must take help from somebody. You must use a stepping stool to get access to any high cabinet. However, get on that stool only when the pain is not hampering you. The best course of action would be to ask your family member to get down an item for you whenever you need it.

Go slowly when getting out of bed

This is a ‘golden rule’ for people who are suffering from arthritis. First, you need to roll on to one side. As the feet are over the edge, use your torso to push up. The upper body will come to a sitting position due to the weight of the legs. Now just sit on the bed with the feet touching the floor. After the dizziness passes away, contract the abdominal muscles to make an effort to stand up. If the bed has grab bars, then this process will be much easier.

Ride a bike

Biking – stationery or outside – helps to build stamina and balance. The impact is much less on knees, hips and other joints. If you are uncomfortable on upright bikes, then go for a recumbent bike. However, you must check with your doctor before starting with this activity. This exercise may not be suitable for you depending on your condition and health.

Practice yoga

Yoga is the best way to improve your posture and balance. Many studies have proved that yoga helps people who are suffering from arthritis. Enroll in a beginner’s class and explain to the teacher any limitations that you may have. The best part is that you can practice yoga at home, too.

Exercise in water

Water based exercises like swimming and water walking are very useful in relieving the stiffness of arthritis. The stress on joints is reduced due to buoyancy and the strength of the joints is increased due to the resistance of the water. Though these exercises are strenuous; they are very helpful in combating joint pains.

Add short bursts of activity

Physical activity in small amount is very essential. You can be engaged in pruning for a mere 10 min or vacuuming for 10-15 min. You may find it difficult to include an hour of exercise in your hectic schedule but short activities can be easily accommodated. Try to use the correct posture and let the larger joints handle the maximum workload. You can even wear a pedometer to track your activity.

Set a goal

You must set a goal for yourself before committing to any sort of physical activity. You can register for a 5K walk or even for a bike ride. When you register for an event, your commitment and motivation increases manifold. You will be motivated to join those events, which have been organized for arthritis research. But you must set realistic goals yourself and give yourself adequate time to complete that.

Try Tai Chi

Tai Chi is a traditional Chinese martial art that helps to reduce pain and stiffness in arthritis patients. Tai Chi concentrates on slow, gentle movements. You can practice in groups or alone. Medical surveys have suggested that those who have participated in Tai Chi sessions have faced lower levels of depression.

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