With most of us staying at home during the current health crisis going on in the world, we should remember to set aside some time to exercise. Exercise is crucial for people with joint issues. It increases strength and flexibility, reduces inflammation, and helps to combat fatigue. Of course, when stiff and achy joints are already slowing you down, the thought of moving around sometime seems overwhelming. You may think exercise will aggravate your joints and stiffness, but really that is not the case. Lack of exercise can actually make your joints even more achy and stiff. Even doing some low impact range of motion exercises for a few minutes a day can help you improve your health and fitness and decrease the discomfort in your joints. Another benefit of exercise is that it decreases stress and anxiety, too.
When exercising remember to breathe deeply to increase oxygen flow. Here are some different types of exercises that can be practiced from the comfort of your home.
Range of motion exercises help you to improve joint function. Active range of motion is how far you can move your joints in different directions. These exercises help you move each joint through its full range. Movement can help keep your joints flexible, reduce pain, and improve balance and strength. Start with neck stretches. Then exercise other body parts in order, moving toward your feet. Do each group of exercises on one side, and then do the same exercises on the other side. Move slowly, gently, and smoothly. Stop if you begin to feel pain. You may feel initial discomfort at first, but regular exercise will help decrease the discomfort over time.
For your neck, you can sit or stand. Face forward with your shoulders straight and relaxed. Gently dip your head forward and try to touch your chin to your chest. Raise your chin back to the starting position. Tilt your head back as far as possible so you are looking up at the ceiling. Return your head to the starting position. Next bend your neck from side to side trying to touch your ear to your shoulder on each side. Next turn your head and look to the left and to the right. Do these exercises 10-15 times.
Shoulder and Elbow Exercises
Again, you can stand or sit while you do these. Hold your arms straight down at your side. Face your palms in toward your body. Use a chair without arms if you are sitting. Raise your arm to the side and then up over your head as far as possible. Return your arm to your side. Bring your arm across the front of your body and reach for the opposite shoulder. Return your arm to the starting position. Next, Raise both shoulders up toward your ears, as if you were trying to shrug. Lower them to the starting position, and relax your shoulders. Pull your shoulders back. Then relax them again. Roll your shoulders in a smooth circle. Then roll your shoulders in a smooth circle in the other direction. Next, with your palm facing forward, bend your elbow. Try to touch your shoulder with your fingertips. Return your arm to the starting position. Do each of these 10-15 times.
Arm and Wrist Exercises
Sit down for these. Bend your elbow and rest your forearm on a flat surface, like a table or on your lap. Make sure your wrist hangs loosely over the side. Bend your hand back toward your wrist so that your fingers point toward the ceiling. Then bend your hand down so that your fingers point toward the floor. Next, Move your hand from side to side flexing your wrist. Then roll your hand in circles in one direction. Roll your hand in circles in the other direction. Now, while staying in the same position, tuck your bent elbow against your side. Face your palm down. Turn your palm so that it faces up toward the ceiling. Then turn your palm so it faces down. Do each of these 10-15 times.
Hand and Finger Exercises
Once again, you can sit or stand. Place your hand out in front of you. Do finger bends – Make a tight fist. Then open and relax your hand, repeat. Finger spreads – Open your hand and stretch the fingers as far apart as possible. Bring your fingers together again. Finger-to-thumb touches – One at a time, touch each fingertip to the tip of your thumb. Thumb-to-palm stretches – Move your thumb and rest it across your palm. Move it out to the side again. Repeat each of these hand and finger exercises 10-15 times on each hand.
Hip and Knee Exercises
If you have had a hip surgery or experience hip pain, only do the hip exercises directed by your doctor. For these you should lie flat on a bed or a padded flat surface with your legs flat and straight. Hip and knee bends – Point your toes, and slowly bend your knee up as close to your chest as possible. Straighten your leg and return it to a flat position on the bed. Repeat. Leg lifts – Keeping your leg straight, raise it up so your foot is 6 to 12 inches in the air. Hold this position for 5 seconds. Return your leg to the bed. Repeat. Side to side leg movement – Flex your foot so your toes point up. Move your leg out to the side as far as possible. Bring your leg back to the middle. Repeat. Leg rotations – Put your leg flat on the bed. Roll your leg toward the middle so your big toe touches the bed. Then roll your leg out and try to make your smallest toe touch the bed. Knee rotations – Lying on your back, bend your knee so the bottom of your foot is flat on the bed. Slide your heel towards your buttocks. Return your foot to the starting position. Once again do these for each leg and repeat each for 10-15 times.
Ankle and Foot Exercises
Do these while sitting in your chair with both feet flat on the floor. Ankle bends – Keep your toes on the floor and raise your heel as high as you can. Lower your heel. Then keep your heel on the floor and raise your toes as high as you can. Ankle rotation – Raise your foot slightly off the floor. Roll your ankle in circles. Then roll your ankle in circles in the other direction. Toe bends – Curl your toes down toward the sole (bottom) of your foot. Straighten them. Curl them up toward the ceiling. Then straighten them again. Toe spreads – Spread your toes apart. Bring them together again. Repeat these exercises for each foot 10-15 times.
Low Impact – Keep the impact low. Low impact exercises help keep joint stress low while you move.
Apply heat – Heat can relax your joints and muscles and relieve any pain you have before you begin. Heat such as a warm towel, or a shower should be warm, not hot, and should be applied for about 20 minutes.
Go slow – Exercise with slow and easy movements. If you feel pain, take a break. Sharp pain and pain that is stronger than your usual joint pain might indicate something is wrong. Slow down if you notice swelling or redness.
Move gently – Move your joints gently at first to warm up. You might begin with range-of-motion exercises for five to 10 minutes before you move on to strengthening or aerobic exercises.
Ice afterward – Apply ice to your joints for 15-20 minutes as needed after exercising, especially after activity that causes joint swelling.
Joint Supplements – Taking a daily joint care supplement like Flexcin can help to re-build damaged joint tissue and cartilage and decrease joint discomfort.
Trust your instincts and don’t exert more energy than you think your joints can handle when starting a new exercise regime. Take it easy and slowly increase your exercise length and intensity as you make progress.
At Flexcin we have been making joint care supplements since the year 2000, and have helped thousands of people find an alternative relief to their joint issues. We provide a supplement with powerful all-natural ingredients used as alternatives to decreasing swelling and rebuilding damaged tissue. And, we offer it at a no risk 90-day trial. If you try Flexcin and are unsatisfied with the results after taking it for three months, simply return the empty bottles for a full refund less shipping and handling.