top of page
  • Writer's pictureCoach Paul Kuck

4 Must-Do Exercises for Arthritis

Arthritis is characterized by swelling, stiffness, and pain in one or many joints.

A doctor checking knee issue
Arthritis can cause pain and make life inconvenient

There are many types of arthritis and the common ones are osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Whatever the type, the symptoms are essentially the same and it can severely decrease range of motion and quality of life.

Many people with arthritis often avoid exercise for fear that it could worsen their joints, but the opposite is true. Your body is designed to move and resting too much could actually cause harm to your joints and the tissues around them.

In fact, exercise is considered the most effective, non-drug treatment for reducing pain and improving movement in people suffering from all forms of arthritis, according to American College of Rheumatology guidelines for systemic diseases (all forms of arthritis).

Sadly, having arthritis is one of the most common reasons people give for not exercising. Doing so, can result in a variety of health risks, including Type II diabetes, cancer, heart disease and osteoporosis, and worsen the arthritis conditions.

A well-designed program can greatly reduce your pain and the symptoms of your condition. Other benefits include:

  • Strengthens and supports the muscles around the affected joint

  • Helps in maintaining bone strength

  • Reduces stiffness in the joints

  • Helps to sleep better

  • Maintaining weight and therefore avoiding putting undue stress on your joints

  • Enhances your quality of living

  • Improving balance

  • Building better endurance and strength

  • improve energy levels and feelings of tiredness

So it’s important to exercise as you can to reduce the risk of your muscles or other tissues around your joints becoming weaker, as this could cause more problems with your joints in the future.

What type of exercise should you do if one is suffering from arthritis?

There are 4 major exercises you MUST DO for arthritis:

1) Flexibility exercises Flexibility is so critical to helping prevent and alleviate pain from arthritis. Exercises like stretching help to maintain or improve the flexibility in affected joints and surrounding muscles. They also help to lubricate the joints. This contributes to better posture, reduced risk of injuries and improved function.

Typical routine: Stretch all major joints for 10 - 30 secs, daily.

2) Strength Training

Strength training (includes weight training and bodyweight training) makes the muscle becomes stronger, it provides greater joint support and helps to absorb shock by reducing loading and stress through the painful joint. Strong muscles and heavier mass, also help to reduce bone loss (leading to osteopenia and osteoporosis) related to inactivity, some forms of inflammatory arthritis and the use of certain medications (corticosteroids).

Typical routine: train major muscles like legs, back, chest, shoulder with compound exercises like squats, bench press, rowing etc 2 or 3 times a week.

3) Cardio exercises These exercises include activities that use the large muscles of the body in a repetitive and rhythmic manner. Cardio exercises like walking, cycling, swimming, climbing etc improve heart, lung, and muscle function. For people with arthritis, this type of exercise has benefits for weight control, mood, sleep, and general health.

Typical routine: perform 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise each week, preferably spread out over several days.

4) Others

These include activities to improve posture, balance, joint position sense (proprioception), coordination and relaxation. When a joint and its surrounding muscles are affected by arthritis, or if a joint has been replaced, the result is often impaired coordination, position awareness, balance and an increased risk of falling. Examples of such exercises include Yoga and Taichi.

Typical routine: perform 2 to 3 times of such exercise sessions a week.

Save time. Save money. Save effort.

If you want to say bye-bye to arthritis, speak to me.

I'll design a safe, all-round exercise program, combining all the above exercises into ONE exercise session, twice a week, using my synergy method as well as arthritis-focused nutrition to manage your condition.

Book a free consultation here.

Coach Paul Kuck, MSc in Exercise and Nutrition Science

Medical Personal Trainer

#arthritis #OA #RA #arthritissingapore

bottom of page