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Wise and Wonderful: July

Wise and Wonderful: July

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It is simple to say, ‘physical activity is key to overall health’ but when it hurts to move, these words of advice make one question whether they have the tools to make that happen.  However, experts and doctors nationwide have been coming together to encourage those with arthritis to ease into movement programs designed to increase range of motion, improve joint strength and support, and increase muscle endurance.  According to the Mayo Clinic, “Exercise is crucial for people with arthritis.  It increases strength and flexibility, reduces joint pain, and helps combat fatigue.”

The problem with continued inactivity is that the role of the muscles is not only to assist in movement, but to protect our joints from damage.  If we are not using a certain area of our body, we are sending a signal to our brain that we no longer need to waste our energy supporting that joint.  Not only do we lose muscle but lack of movement reduces the amount of blood and nutrients the joint receives.  This all contributes to increased pain and stiffness adding to the cycle of inactivity.

Speak with your doctor about what types of exercises would be most appropriate to begin.  Begin with slow, controlled movements and take time to ease into a program.  Finally, if you see a significant increase in inflammation or experience sharp, unusual pain these are signals to back off.

Take Care and Be Well!

*This blog was first published here: Sunshine Retirement Living