Although exercise is crucial to the human body, some types of workouts can actually make joint pain worse. For chronic joint pain sufferers, low-impact exercises that don’t place stress on tender joints are often recommended.1
Here are some details about how water sports like swimming and water aerobics can help people stay healthy and active while eliminating pressure on their joints.
Swimming and Joint Health
Swimming is a great low-impact, a moderate-intensity workout that can help reduce joint stiffness and strengthen the muscles around the joints. It can also strengthen bones and support overall health. According to a study published in The Journal of Rheumatology, swimming is an ideal exercise for people with arthritis for these reasons.2
Swimming works out different muscle groups at the same time and builds lean muscle, which is important for the metabolism.3 People who are new to swimming should consider taking a swim lesson to learn about the various swim strokes. Some strokes may be better suited to the type of joint pain that one suffers from.
Water Aerobics and Joint Health
Doing laps in the pool isn’t the only way to exercise and reduce stiffness in the joints with the aid of water. Water aerobics is a fun way to increase the heart rate without putting stress on the joints. With other types of non-water exercises where the feet hit the ground, excess strain in placed on the hips, knees, ankles, and back.3 Water is buoyant and supports the body weight as well as reduces the risk of repetitive stress injuries and over-extension.
These types of classes often involve props like pool noodles, flotation belts, water weights, and kickboards to carry out the exercises. Furthermore, they have both cardio and strength training components to build strength, boost endurance, and increase flexibility at the same time. This is an excellent way to burn calories, reduce blood pressure, relieve stress, and perhaps even make new friends while taking it easy on the joints.
Other Water Sports for Variety
It is important to add variety to workouts to use different muscle groups, prevent boredom, and stay motivated. Fortunately, there are many other types of water sports suitable for all skill levels besides swimming and water aerobics as well.
These are some other water sports to consider to switch up a workout routine and challenge the body in entirely new ways.
- Scuba diving
- Water polo
- Synchronized swimming
Additional Joint Support
While water sports may help reduce joint pain, arthritis sufferers and athletes may require addition joint support to continue engaging in the activities they love. JointFlex provides immediate and long-lasting relief for many types of joint issues that are caused by inflammation and stress over time. This formula provides deep penetration and powerful relief when applied to painful regions of the body.
Hydrotherapy with warm water can ease the pressure on the joints, and cryotherapy can reduce swelling when pain first begins to strike.4,5,6 Other ways to relieve joint pain include massages and getting plenty of rest to enable the body to naturally repair itself.7,8,9
REFERENCES FOR HOW WATER SPORTS ELIMINATE PRESSURE ON JOINTS
1. Winters, C. Fifteen ways to work out with arthritis. Arthritis Foundation. Retrieved November 1, 2018 from https://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/exercise/workouts/other-activities/workouts-for-arthritis.php.
2. Alkatan, M., Baker, J. R., Machin, D. R., Park, W., Akkari, A.S., Pasha, E. P., & Tanaka, H. (2016 March). Improved function and reduced pain after swimming and cycling training in patients with osteoarthritis. The Journal of Rheumatology, 43, 663-672. DOI: https://doi.org/10.3899/jrheum.151110. Retrieved November 1, 2018 from National Center for Biotechnology Information https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26773104.
3. Swimming – health benefits. Better Health Channel. Retrieved November 1, 2018 from https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/swimming-health-benefits#lp-h-2.
4. Aquatics. Arthritis Foundation. Retrieved November 1, 2018 from https://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/exercise/arthritis-friendly/aquatics.php.
5. Warm water works wonders on pain. Arthritis Foundation. Retrieved November 1, 2018 from https://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/pain-management/tips/warm-water-therapy.php.
6. Cryotherapy (cold therapy) for pain management. Johns Hopkins Medicine. Retrieved November 1, 2018 from https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/healthlibrary/conditions/orthopaedic_disorders/cryotherapy_cold_therapy_for_pain_management_134,95.
7. Foltz-Gray, D. Fight arthritis pain without pills. Arthritis Foundation. Retrieved November 1, 2018 from https://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/pain-management/tips/arthritis-pain-relief-alternatives.php.
8. Bernstein, S. Benefits of massage. Arthritis Foundation. Retrieved November 1, 2018 from https://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/treatments/natural/other-therapies/massage/massage-benefits.php.
9. Sleep and pain. Arthritis Foundation. Retrieved November 1, 2018 from https://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/pain-management/chronic-pain/sleep-factors.php.
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