While many of us are familiar with the occasional joint pop or the debate between ice and heat therapies, there's another crucial aspect to consider: exercise.
In a recent chat with Robert, a seasoned physical therapist at the Medical Center, we delved deep into the world of exercise and its impact on joint health. The verdict? Exercise is not just beneficial; it's essential.
For those battling joint pain, the idea of exercising might seem counterintuitive. However, Robert assures us that consistent, mild to moderate exercise can have a positive effect on alleviating joint pain. While it might be daunting to start an exercise routine, especially if you're new to it, the benefits far outweigh the initial discomfort.
Building an Exercise Routine
When it comes to crafting an effective exercise routine, Robert suggests a three-pronged approach:
Range of Motion Exercises: Especially beneficial for those with arthritis, these exercises combat joint stiffness. The best part? They require minimal equipment and can be done daily, depending on the affected joint.
Strengthening Exercises: To build muscle strength, resistance is key. Using bands, ankle weights, or other forms of resistance can be beneficial. However, it's essential to ease into these exercises to avoid soreness.
Aerobic Exercises: Activities that elevate your heart rate not only reduce pain but also enhance overall fitness. Low-impact activities like walking, biking, or swimming are ideal. These exercises, done daily, can also boost heart health and help control weight.
The Power of Walking
We underestimate the power of simple activities like walking. Not only does it increase heart rate, but it also sets the foundation for a more rigorous routine. If you're new to exercising, starting with a daily walk can be a game-changer.
When Exercise Doesn't Seem to Help
Arthritis is a long-term condition, and while exercise can alleviate some symptoms, it's not an immediate cure. If join pain persists after a month of consistent exercise, it might be time to consult a provider.
There are always alternatives to explore, and sometimes, a tailored physical therapy session or meeting with a specialized orthopedics doctor might be the answer.
Luckily with OMC's top notch physical therapy team and their partnership with Twin Cities Orthopedics, we can help you get the care you need!