Water Exercise and Arthritis

Feb 23, 2011
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If you have had a diagnosis of Arthritis for some time, you may have been told that exercise will damage your joints. That information would be enough to scare a person into sitting quite still, especially since moving hurts.

The most current research has led to a shift in the standard of care for Arthritis. It is now clear to researchers that regular, moderate exercise offers a wide range of benefits to people with Arthritis that includes reducing joint pain and stiffness, building strong muscle around joints that increase flexibility and helping to reduce the risk of secondary conditions that might worsen a person’s health- such as obesity, heart disease and osteoporosis.

It can be pretty hard to imagine flinging yourself into an exercise program when you are in pain from even the smallest motion. That is why many people with arthritis decide to initiate an exercise program by exercising in a pool of water.

Think about it- the water is doing part of the work for you by buoying you up, reducing the weight on your joints and also providing resistance to motion that will increase the value of each movement you make.

It has been said that simply walking in water provides 12 times the resistance of waling on land (through air) so a person would be gaining an excellent value for each step taken in water compared to on land.  In addition to reducing the stress and strain on every joint of the body, exercising in water also burns calories faster than exercising on land. Walking on land burns about 240 calories per hour; while walking at the same pace through a pool of water burns about 530 calories per hour. Doing the exercise in a pool of water that is warmed has been shown to loosen muscles and joints which give the person the ability to stretch more effectively and lengthen their movements.

Before you  begin an exercise program, it is wise to check with your doctor. Start the program slowly and see how you feel as you work up, over several days, from three repetitions to eight repetitions. Don’t hesitate to cut back on exercise if it makes the pain worse. Start slowly and proceed without overdoing it. Doing exercise correctly is the key.

Author: Tanya

  • Vini_p_2000

    is it necessary that the pool water should warmed up…?

  • Chikittsa Wellness

    Thank you for valuable information ! This article is enough to motivate a patient to exercise. But there are some treatments like Physiotherapy, Acupressure,
    Acupuncture etc by which patient can feel relaxed and they lessens rigidness of joint.

    Chikittsa Wellness