As we age, our joints don’t hesitate to let us know when they’re unhappy. Osteoarthritis is no cakewalk. Over time, the joint disorder breaks down cartilage that safeguards bones, usually in the knees, hips, spine, or hands. The most noticeable symptoms are pain, stiffness, bone spurs, swelling, and a lack of flexibility, all of which are inconvenient, to say the least. Although people associate osteoarthritis as something you have when you’re in your 60s and 70s, it’s possible to have it in your 20s and 30s.
It’s a common condition, but that’s not comforting to hear if you’re dealing with symptoms or concerned about losing mobility. While there’s no cure for osteoarthritis, lifestyle changes can reduce symptoms and slow its progression. Working out might be the last thing you want to do if you have osteoarthritis, but, for many, it’s a critical component of treatment and lifelong joint strength.
Osteoarthritis Knee Exercises
Believe it or not, osteoarthritis and exercise go hand in hand. According to Dr. Scott Zashin, a board-certified Internist and Rheumatologist in Dallas, TX, although osteoarthritis can be physically limiting, especially in the knees, exercising can relieve symptoms. Physical activity can improve flexibility and muscle strength no matter how old you are. Additionally, exercise can help osteoarthritis patients maintain mobility. Keep in mind that maintaining joint strength and mobility is crucial throughout your entire life, even if your symptoms are mild or nonexistent.
So, what are the best joint-friendly osteoarthritis knee exercises? Dr. Zashin says “swimming and stationary biking are good for the knees” as well as “walking on a soft surface, such as an athletic track.”
However, if pain or symptoms get worse when you exercise, stop and get reevaluated by a physician. Dr. Zashin states that “high-intensity exercise such as running or jumping should generally be avoided if it aggravates the pain of osteoarthritis. This is especially true if the pain is still noticeable the day after you exercise.”
Low-Impact Workouts at Home
When it comes to low-impact cardio, stationary cycling is ideal. It’s easy on the joints and doesn’t require you to bear any weight. With the Star Trac bike from MYXfitness, you can work out in the comfort of your home and adjust the workouts to suit your unique needs and abilities.
We recommend consulting your physician before beginning any exercise regimen. But once you’ve got a medical stamp of approval and are ready to move, the jam-packed catalog of MYXfitness rides has you covered.