How many times have you heard “oh I stopped exercising or being active because of my arthritis”!
Very often, patients we speak with make the assumption that it is best to stop being active once they have arthritis in their hip, knee, shoulder or any joint. This line of thinking is based on the belief that their arthritis pain is a result of wear and tear on their joints. It is with that thinking where many health care providers, doctors, nurses and sometimes even physical therapists, tell their patients to stop doing the active things they enjoy doing in an attempt to slow down arthritis.
You’ll be surprised then to know that research has actually shown that staying active is actually what helps slow down arthritis and also helps people improve their quality of life!
What Actually Causes Arthritis?
Many of you are thinking “well if its not from wear and tear, how did I get arthritis?”.
While arthritis is a common occurrence in life, it is a rather complicated happening. Much of the research on arthritis suggests it can be caused from a number of things including: an inflammation response in the joint, bone alignment, or in some cases from a traumatic injury (meniscus tear or broken bone). Or it could be combination of many factors.
How Can Back in Action Help Me With Arthritis?
Research has shown that moderate exercise can improve our general function, quality of life and also prevent progression of arthritis. The experienced therapists at Back in Action will help develop specific programs to meet your individual needs whether it be a strengthening program to reduce stress on the joints, a stretching program to improve flexibility, selecting the best cardio or walking program, correcting your movement patterns, utilizing manual techniques to improve pain and mobility or a combination of the above. In many cases improving your strength and flexibility can help you delay or prevent the need for a surgical intervention.
So, in short, just because you have arthritis it doesn’t mean you should stop doing what you love to do. Just remember exercise can be one of the best medicines you can “take”!
Ger Schmidt PT, DPT, CSCS
Physical Therapist, Strength & Conditioning Specialist