Moving your joints through their normal range of movement, from small joints (moving thumbs, toes and ankles), through to bigger movements like lifting your arms over your head and rolling your shoulders. Daily.
Strong muscles support and protect joints. Weightbearing exercise will maintain or increase your current muscle strength. This can be at a gym or deliberate lifting and carrying as part of doing household chores. Every other day.
Aerobic or endurance exercise helps control weight, build stamina and increase energy. Joint friendly aerobic exercises include stretching, yoga, walking, cycling, tai-chi and any exercise in water. The most benefit is gained in 20 minutes; after that benefits gained diminish significantly. Daily.
Turn to Tai-Chi
Tai chi is ideal for joint health and habilitation, improving strength, focus, movement, balance and preventing falls.
In a study of chronic arthritis pain sufferers, researchers at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland found that those attending weekly hour-long tai chi classes had significantly less pain than those who did not take the class. Researcher Patricia Adler, said “Tai chi increases circulation, which may improve joint function. It also stabilises the joint structure and strengthens soft tissue that supports the joint, to help reduce pain.”
A Tufts University School of Medicine study showed tai chi twice weekly for 12 weeks improved pain, mood, sleep and exercise capacity. Gains still present 24 weeks later.