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Don’t Let Arthritis Be a Barrier Preventing You From Proper Exercise

We often hear about the dangers of heart disease and how we can protect our heart and its pipes by increasing our fitness. But we rarely hear about how we can safeguard our joints from the incapacitating condition called arthritis that can downgrade the quality of our life as we grow older by a far greater degree.

Arthritis is a term that covers more than one hundred conditions that involve the joint – the moving part where a bone meets another bone such as the knee or the elbow. Although arthritis can impair the last third of a persons life it can start at a young age and be smoldering away as early as the twenties or thirties. But it is not until you reach your forties or fifties that joints begin to stiffen and movement becomes painful.

Joint cartilage is a rubber like tissue at the end of our bones that allow for smooth movement of our limbs and to absorb shock from the rigors of daily living. When this cartilage wears away the result is loss of motion, stiffness and pain. It eventually can result in disability and needing to depend on others.

We know now that it is not overuse that is the cause of arthritis but rather ‘disuse’. A lifestyle that does not include enough strength building and maintaining activity gradually reduces the ranges of motion of the joint starving the cartilage of the fluid it needs to be healthy. It is only with movement that lubrication is stimulated and nutrients can be absorbed and waste can be removed. You cannot move easily and pain free if your joints are not healthy.

Keeping your muscular system strong is vital to either prevent or manage arthritis. Strong muscles, tendons and ligaments support, cushion and protect the joints even those that are weak and already damaged from arthritis. Muscle wasting from inactivity has a huge negative impact on this condition as the joint no longer has the supportive affect from strong firm muscles.

Weak, flabby thin muscles cannot protect the joints from literally wearing themselves away like an engine without oil. Without that support from the muscles the cartilage wears excessively just from everyday activities.

As this condition progresses and worsens debilitating pain leads to an even more inactive and sedentary lifestyle. This then exposes people with this condition to the increased risk of other serious health conditions like heart disease or diabetes or many others.

Strength training exercise is especially beneficial to people with arthritis because it keeps the bones, muscles and joints healthy. It has long been recognized that proper muscle building and maintaining exercise can improve physical function and reduce pain thereby improving quality of life. But research shows that people with this condition have a much lower rate of participation in proper exercise than people without arthritis.

It is important to see health problems such as arthritis as a reason to start and continue a proper strength training exercise program rather than as an obstacle or barrier preventing exercise. Get some help from a fitness professional as it is important that time is not wasted on unsafe and ineffective exercise. In just a few months strong muscles will take up their support positions and take the weight and pressure off those poor suffering joints.

Although this condition is the result of lifestyle choices made and not made years or decades ago it is never too late to slow the progression of the disease down. When you get some relief from pain and stiffness you may enjoy the many enjoyable activities that our exciting modern world has to offer.



Don’t Let Arthritis Be a Barrier Preventing You From Proper Exercise

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Don’t Let Arthritis Be a Barrier Preventing You From Proper Exercise

Published by: Marybell Jerald Tining | Word Count: 593 | Comments: 0 | Article Views: 84


We often hear about the dangers of heart disease and how we can protect our heart and its pipes by increasing our fitness. But we rarely hear about how we can safeguard our joints from the incapacitating condition called arthritis that can downgrade the quality of our life as we grow older by a far greater degree.

Arthritis is a term that covers more than one hundred conditions that involve the joint – the moving part where a bone meets another bone such as the knee or the elbow. Although arthritis can impair the last third of a persons life it can start at a young age and be smoldering away as early as the twenties or thirties. But it is not until you reach your forties or fifties that joints begin to stiffen and movement becomes painful.

Joint cartilage is a rubber like tissue at the end of our bones that allow for smooth movement of our limbs and to absorb shock from the rigors of daily living. When this cartilage wears away the result is loss of motion, stiffness and pain. It eventually can result in disability and needing to depend on others.

We know now that it is not overuse that is the cause of arthritis but rather ‘disuse’. A lifestyle that does not include enough strength building and maintaining activity gradually reduces the ranges of motion of the joint starving the cartilage of the fluid it needs to be healthy. It is only with movement that lubrication is stimulated and nutrients can be absorbed and waste can be removed. You cannot move easily and pain free if your joints are not healthy.

Keeping your muscular system strong is vital to either prevent or manage arthritis. Strong muscles, tendons and ligaments support, cushion and protect the joints even those that are weak and already damaged from arthritis. Muscle wasting from inactivity has a huge negative impact on this condition as the joint no longer has the supportive affect from strong firm muscles.

Weak, flabby thin muscles cannot protect the joints from literally wearing themselves away like an engine without oil. Without that support from the muscles the cartilage wears excessively just from everyday activities.

As this condition progresses and worsens debilitating pain leads to an even more inactive and sedentary lifestyle. This then exposes people with this condition to the increased risk of other serious health conditions like heart disease or diabetes or many others.

Strength training exercise is especially beneficial to people with arthritis because it keeps the bones, muscles and joints healthy. It has long been recognized that proper muscle building and maintaining exercise can improve physical function and reduce pain thereby improving quality of life. But research shows that people with this condition have a much lower rate of participation in proper exercise than people without arthritis.

It is important to see health problems such as arthritis as a reason to start and continue a proper strength training exercise program rather than as an obstacle or barrier preventing exercise. Get some help from a fitness professional as it is important that time is not wasted on unsafe and ineffective exercise. In just a few months strong muscles will take up their support positions and take the weight and pressure off those poor suffering joints.

Although this condition is the result of lifestyle choices made and not made years or decades ago it is never too late to slow the progression of the disease down. When you get some relief from pain and stiffness you may enjoy the many enjoyable activities that our exciting modern world has to offer.

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Marybell Jerald Tining has published 1 article. This article published on Jun 02nd 2010 11:08:10 AM

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