Learn the facts and get motivated with these ideas
More than 50 million U.S. adults have some form of arthritis. Of those with arthritis, a growing number of people being diagnosed are under the age of 44. According to the Centers for Disease Control, the following segments have been diagnosed with arthritis:
- Seven percent of adults ages 18-44
- One in 250 children
WebMD notes there are more than 100 types of arthritis—each impacting the body differently. Along with an increased number of people diagnosed with arthritis comes increased awareness of what is best for the condition. Experts agree:
- Exercise is beneficial and recommended to help control—and even reduce the impact of—arthritis.
- Regular physical activity keeps your joints lubricated, which makes movement easier
- Exercise produces endorphins which help control pain
- Regular physical activity improves your overall health and even helps you sleep at night
Although starting an exercise program can be daunting when you have arthritis, there are many benefits to working a workout into your regular routine.
Chris Kost, Director of Healthy Living at the River Valley YMCA in Prior Lake, suggests the following ideas to stay motivated for exercise with arthritis:
- Set realistic short- and long-term goals—and be sure to reward yourself when you achieve them
- Use the F.I.T.T. Principle (Frequency, Intensity, Time and Type) to plan your workouts
- Exercise with a friend or family member
- Keep an exercise log—you can do it on your smartphone with apps like My Fitness Pal
- Try new things to keep your workout fresh and interesting—like an Arthritis Water Exercise class at the YMCA
Jumpstart your plans to exercise with a at your local Y, or sign up with a Personal Trainer who can help you plan a customized exercise program, stay motivated, ward off boredom and reach your goals!