Exercises to ease the pain of osteoarthritis

Exercises to ease the pain of osteoarthritis

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Living with osteoarthritis (the degenerative joint condition) can be challenging with the pain becoming almost unbearable at certain times.

However, there are certain exercises that you can do to strengthen your joints and ease the pain associated with osteoarthritis. We have put together a few exercises below, recommended for people who suffer from osteoarthritis in their knees. Before attempting any of these exercises, however, it is imperative that you chat to your healthcare provider about starting to exercise.

Exercise is essential to maintain a healthy weight and strengthen your bones and joints. For certain people who suffer from osteoarthritis, exercise can help ease the pain associated with osteoarthritis and even improve movement. According to www.mayoclinic.co.za, when you have osteoarthritis, incorporating stretching, range-of-motion and very basic strengthening exercises into your daily routine can help manage your symptoms and improve knee function.

Here are a few exercises that we have put together that are safe for osteoarthritis sufferers, and that will help strengthen your knee joints:
Hamstring Stretch
Sit comfortably on the edge of a chair with your feet flat on the ground. Then slowly straighten one in front of you. The heel of this foot should be on the ground with your toes pointed up to the sky. Keep the other leg underneath your body with your foot firmly on the ground. Keeping your back straight, gently lean forward from your hips until you feel a stretch in the back of your outstretched leg. Hold it for 10 seconds and then release. Repeat with each leg.
Back Leg Slide
Stand straight up, holding the back of a chair with your feet next to each other. Slowly slide one foot backward keeping your toes on the floor until you feel butt tighten. Carefully slide your foot back to its original position and repeat with the other leg.
Step Ups
Stand facing a step or sturdy raised platform. The platform should not be too high up, but as high as an average step would be. Step up with your right foot, followed by your left, and then step back down with your right foot, followed by your left. Repeat this sequence, leading with the right foot, then switch and lead with the left foot.
Mini Squats
Stand straight up with the back of a chair directly in front of you. Place your feet shoulder-length apart from each other and hold the back of the chair. Keep your feet flat on the ground and slowly bend your knees a few centimetres. Keep your knees in line with your toes and your back straight. Hold this for 6 seconds, then push up through your heels to return to your starting position.
These exercises can be repeated in sets of three or, in conjunction with a consultation with your healthcare provider, can be adjusted to suit your specific requirements. One important thing to note, is that with any exercise routine, you should never sit in any discomfort or pain. If you do find this happening, then speak to your healthcare provider or alternatively try a different exercise.
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