Exercising has been proven to help reduce joint pain and increase flexibility. Sometimes, with conditions like arthritis, certain exercises can cause a painful flare up or produce inflammation. To avoid joint pain and still reap the benefits of physical fitness, we’ve outlined 8 low impact exercises for your joints.
1. Swimming – Swimming has countless benefits and can start out slow and get increasingly harder if you desire. The longer you swim the more your endurance and strength will improve. Start out by slowly swimming laps, then you can change your workout to include different strokes or strength training exercises in the water. Swimming enables you to stay fit and avoid heavy impact on your joints.
2. Walking – This is an easy exercise that can be done anywhere. Walking can also be modified to fit your needs. Change locations, terrain, or bring weights to get that heart rate up. Be sure to use comfortable walking shoes.
3. Hiking – This is one way to spice up a regular walk. Stick to flatter hiking trails in order to keep the hike low impact. Lace up your boots and you’re ready to go!
3. Rowing machine – This hidden gym machine is often forgotten by gym-goers. Rowing is actually an all over body workout. Rowing is one of the only cardio machines that works your upper body and improves posture. Burn calories and be gentle on your joints with the rowing machine.
4. Cycling – Cycling is fun because it can be done indoors or outdoors. Most gyms have stationary bikes you can ride or maybe even a cycling class you can sign up for. If not, having a bike at home is beneficial because you can take it out to ride any time on many different terrains. Don’t forget your helmet before you go!
5. Dancing – This is the perfect way to wiggle and dance your way into shape without hurting your joints. The types of dance you can do are endless and most gyms offer zumba classes. Even belly dancing, salsa, and jazz can be beneficial. Dancing allows you to strengthen muscles, increase bone strength and flexibility, and eases pain.
6. Elliptical – Ellipticals are impact free machines that are like running on air. They are a great exercise for beginners and runners who are looking for less impact on their joints. Some machines even have arm pumping attachments to burn even more calories.
7. Yoga – Yoga is an ideal combination of flexibility, strength, endurance training, and stretching. It is also adaptable for all ages and skill levels. If you are a beginner, don’t worry if you can’t do every pose, your yoga instructor is there to help you. Yoga can help you burn calories without high impact on the joints, as well as lower your stress levels.
8. Step aerobics – Aerobics provides an overall body workout. Stepping during aerobics makes it more intense, but without a negative impact on the joints. Aerobics normally incorporates kicking and punching to get all of your muscles into gear.
Exercising can be done without causing further damage to the joints, leaving you in more pain. It’s important to keep up your physical fitness levels not only for overall health and maintaining weight, but to strengthen the muscles and ligaments surrounding your joints. Low impact exercises for your joints are easy to incorporate in your existing joint pain treatment plan. The benefits of exercise are infinite and should be enjoyed by everyone, even if you’re suffering from joint pain.