If you suffer from arthritis, or very stiff joints, exercise may be the last things you want do, however getting out into the fresh air and doing some low intensity, aerobic exercise can be extremely beneficial and help to prevent stiff joints.
Sports such a yoga and Pilates can help to build up your core muscles, and the muscles which support your joints, and also reduce joint inflammation. Opt for gentle movements and light stretches and build up slowly, the gentle stretching involved in each exercise can help you to maintain mobility and movement. However try and avoid any hot or power yoga as this can end up putting excessive pressure on your joints.
Aerobic exercises including walking, cycling and swimming are also great for those suffering from arthritis. Swimming can be particularly good as the buoyancy of the water can help relieve any pressure on your joints while you exercise, giving you that extra supportive barrier which will help cushion any inflamed joints. Cycling also acts in a similarly supportive manner as is helps you avoid the pounding of high-impact aerobic activities. Like Yoga and Pilates it can also help to strengthen your leg muscles that support your joints. So whether its on an exercise bike or in the great outdoors, cycling can be an effective way of staying fit while making sure your joints aren’t placed under too much pressure.
If you are experiencing a severe flare up it is best to rest for a couple of days before par taking in any kind of physical activity. If you feel like it you could simply go for a walk, but make sure not to push yourself too much if you are in pain. The best thing you can do is to listen to your body. Remember pain is your body’s way of telling you to stop, so always go at your own pace.