Exercise For Arthritis

Exercise for arthritis is considered important by both Oriental and conventional medicine. The health benefits of activating your larger muscle groups are only beginning to be understood here in the west, although Oriental medicine has long known and promoted these benefits.


Ancient Chinese Proverb

Running water doesn't get stale, and a door-hinge never gets worm eaten.


Regular exercise can:

  • Strengthen the muscles surrounding arthritic joints
  • Lessen bone loss
  • Control joint swelling and pain
  • Lubricate the joints
  • Reduce stiffness and pain
  • Decrease fatigue
  • Improve sleep
  • Increase flexibility
  • Increase weight loss (important for overweight arthritis sufferers).

Not all exercises are the same, though. Some can even cause arthritis. Aerobics, weight lifting and jogging...

...not always good for the joints, from the perspective of Oriental medicine. Walking and biking are usually better choices.

The absolute best arthritis exercise would be tai chi (or possibly even yoga). They help your overall health, too - not just your arthritis.

Tai Chi For Arthritis

Tai chi is a gentle exercise that will:

  • Improve your circulation (important for arthritis)
  • Calm stress (which is one component of pain)
  • Reduce the risk of falls (by almost 48% according to one study)
  • Greatly improve overall health

If you feel you're in too much pain to start exercise for arthritis, begin with "water exercise". The water reduces the stress on your joints, especially your spine, hips and knees. Once you've improved your strength and mobility, you can move on to other types of exercise.

Considering that some exercises are tough on the joints, it's impressive that a study showed a 10-week course of tai-chi did not aggravate arthritis.

You can find tai-chi classes in your town, or use instructional videos found online.

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