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Arthritis: Workout mistakes that worsen the ailment

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Dr Akhilesh Yadav
Working out is great if you have arthritis but doing it incorrectly might worsen it. Here are the most common workout mistakes you might be making.
Arthritis refers to the condition under which you experience pain, swelling, and stiffness in your joints. Arthritis may be due to gradual ageing and wear and tear of the joints (Osteoarthritis) or due to an autoimmune disease (Rheumatoid arthritis). In both cases, the symptoms may hinder your mobility and comfort.
In most cases, along with the right diet and medication, most doctors advise exercising and physical activities to reduce the pain and other symptoms. However, as arthritis compromises the health of our joints, bones, and muscles, it might affect our body’s ability to perform and recover from some activities. In this article, we discuss some of the common workout mistakes and exercising that might be worsening your arthritis.
10 workout mistakes you are making which is worsening your arthritis:
Not warming up
Warmness is extremely important if you want to avoid straining or shocking your joints. Which high-intensity workouts might cause if you don’t start with a warm-up.
Using incline
Incline setting on the treadmill as well as hiking as a workout activity may worsen your arthritis. Incline walking and running can cause excessive strain to your knees and leg joints and may worsen your symptoms.
Not drinking enough water
Drink water throughout your day and workout. Lack of water in the body also worsens the health of your joints as 1/2 to 3/4 of the human body is made up of water and needs lubrication in its joints.
Your posture is incorrect
Working out with an incorrect posture can do more harm than good. Make sure to seek correct guidance while working out, socially as a beginner.
Not breathing enough
Avoid overstraining and take time to breathe between workouts. Oxygen helps facilitate the good health of your joints and tissues. Lack of oxygen can cause even more pain to your joints and muscles.
Not following a routine
Another important factor to ensure the good health of your joints is to stay consistent. Working out regularly ensures your joints get adequate movement and stay flexible. Lack of routine might cause more strain than comfort.
Skipping rope
Skipping is another sports activity that can worsen the health of your joints and make your arthritis worse. Stick to exercises that don’t strain your knees or other joints.
Climbing stairs
Similar to skipping, taking stars is another activity that might worsen your arthritis. Although it may appear as a quick and easy workout, it might worsen your symptoms later on.
Taking painkillers before the workout
If you are under medication and pain killers for your arteries, make sure there is enough time difference between you consuming your medication and your workout routine. The painkillers might mask any injury or strain you might get during your workout.
Going overboard
The first step to working out when you have arthritis is to take it slow. Arthritis compromises the health of your joints and makes them more sensitive to injuries. In order to have a proper workout routine, build the elasticity of your joints gradually.
In conclusion, various factors influence the health of your joints. If you have already been diagnosed with arthritis, you are encouraged to talk to your doctor about your diet and lifestyle. Your doctor might advise you to make some healthy changes to your diet, lifestyle, and workout routine. Besides this, also make sure to clearly discuss the exercises your doctor recommends and advises against.
(The author is Associate Director – Orthopedics and Joint Replacement, Max Hospital, Vaishali)


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