Arthritis & Exercise: Talk With Your Doctor
A skilled physician who is knowledgeable about the medical and rehabilitation needs of people with arthritis, working with a physical therapist also familiar with the needs of people with arthritis, can design an exercise plan for each patient.
Should People With Arthritis Exercise?
Studies have shown that exercise helps people with arthritis in many ways. Exercise reduces joint pain and stiffness and increases:
It also helps with weight reduction and contributes to an improved sense of well-being.
How Does Exercise Fit Into a Treatment Plan for People With Arthritis?
Exercise is one part of a comprehensive arthritis treatment plan. Treatment plans also may include:
Treatment also may include instruction on:
3 Types Of Exercise Are Best For People With ArthritisWhat types of exercise are most suitable for someone with arthritis?
Weight control can be important to people who have arthritis because extra weight puts extra pressure on many joints. Some studies show that aerobic exercise can reduce inflammation in some joints.
Most health clubs and community centers offer exercise programs for people with physical limitations.
How Does a Person With Arthritis Start an Exercise Program?People with arthritis should discuss exercise options with their doctors and other health care providers. Most doctors recommend exercise for their patients. Many people with arthritis begin with easy, range-of-motion exercises and low-impact aerobics. People with arthritis can participate in a variety of, but not all, sports and exercise programs. Your doctor will know which, if any, sports are off-limits.
Your doctor may have suggestions about how to get started or may refer the patient to a physical therapist. It is best to find a physical therapist who has experience working with people who have arthritis. The physical therapist will design an appropriate home exercise program and teach clients about:
Arthritis & Exercise: How To Get Started
Consider appropriate recreational exercise (after doing range-of-motion, strengthening, and aerobic exercise). Fewer injuries to joints affected by arthritis occur during recreational exercise if it is preceded by range-of-motion, strengthening, and aerobic exercise that gets your body in the best condition possible.
How Often Should People With Arthritis Exercise?
Are Researchers Studying Arthritis & Exercise?
Researchers continue to look for and find benefits from exercise to patients with:
Researchers are also studying the benefits of exercise in older populations.