Aqua Therapy Could Be Just What The Doctor Ordered When it Comes to Your Arthritis Pain
Trade in your sneakers for a swimsuit!
This post has been updated from its original version, which was posted on June 29th, 2016.
The stiffness and joint pain from arthritis can make exercising incredibly difficult. However, staying active can improve your flexibility and range of motion, as well as protect and strengthen your joints. If your arthritis symptoms are simply too painful to do gentle yoga or walking fitness, the orthopedics team at The Central Orthopedic Group suggests that you consider water exercise as an alternative.
Exercising in water allows your joints to have a full range of motion, without much resistance. The natural buoyancy found in water offers a weightless quality, effectively taking stress off of your sore joints. Du to these reasons, water aerobics is a gentle routine that is both beneficial and easy to adhere to. Here are some tips to get you started from our orthopedists at The Central Orthopedic Group.
1. Start with Walking Laps in the Pool
If you are new to water exercises, it’s important to see how your body adjusts and reacts. Begin by completing walking laps or marching in place. Gradually add leg kicks to the front, side, and back while keeping your balance on the side of the pool. Feeling comfortable? Work in arm lifts and circles to include more joints.
2. Take a Water Aerobics Class
There are countless classes and group fitness programs that are specifically designed for gentle and and affective arthritis exercise! If you’re already comfortable in the water, consider a class at your gym or local YMCA that caters to water aerobics for arthritis. At The Central Orthopedic Group we always advise that you inform your instructor of your condition to ensure that modifications can be made for your movements.
3. Ask Your Orthopedist for Help
Want to try aquatic therapy, but not sure where to begin? Ask your orthopedist! We are always happy to provide a recommendation that is catered to your diagnosis. It’s our job to provide guidance, education and care to ensure that you are properly treating and managing your arthritis.
4. Don’t get Discouraged
You might be surprised by how sore your body could be feeling after the first few water sessions. Delayed-onset muscle soreness is a natural response to a new exercise regime, and is an indicator that your muscles are growing stronger.
However, if you’re feeling so sore that it’s inhibiting your day-to-day tasks, you may have pushed yourself too far. Consult with your doctor to create a scaled back regime that is still effective to your goals! And remember, the stronger you get, the less sore you will feel.