Exercise and Arthritis


Research shows that exercises is one of the best treatments for arthritis, osteoarthritis and osteoporosis. Exercises can improve mood and outlook, decrease pain, increase flexibility, improve the heart and blood flow, maintain weight, increase bone density, strengthen muscles and ligaments, increase aerobic capacity, increase endurance and stamina, and promote general physical fitness.


Exercises are also inexpensive and, if done correctly, has few negative side effects. The amount and form of exercise will depend on which joints are involved, how stable the joints are, and whether a joint replacement has already been done and the condition of the bones and joints.


1)  Researchers found that people who do moderate, regular exercises have low, if any, risk of developing osteoarthritis. Exercises also helps arthritis and relieves arthritic pain, improves strength, endurance, flexibility, and ability to  perform daily tasks. Bone density is increased, thus preventing further rapid deterioration of bone formation.


2)  However, people who participate in certain types of sports are at risk for the arthritis and osteoarthritis.  These ‘extreme’ exercises involved:-

·        high-intensity, direct joint impact

·        repeated joint impact

·        repeated joint twisting


Examples include baseball, football, soccer, jogging, sprinting, certain hard styles of martial arts, etc.


Early diagnosis and effective treatment of sports injuries and complete rehabilitation should decrease the risk of osteoarthritis from these injuries.



Traditional Chinese medicine, especially traditional experts in the Chinese martial arts and bone-setting indicate that repeated injury or abuse of any part, and not just the joints, of the body will increase the risk of arthritis or osteoarthritis.


3)  Arthritis is one of the most common reasons people give for limiting physical activity. Pain, stiffness, fatigue and the fear of doing harm can make it difficult to be physically active. Being inactive actually increases arthritis problems! Many people who become inactive due to arthritis are less fit, weaker and less flexible and have more pain than necessary. However, adequate and regular exercise is very important for treatment and management of arthritis.



Sensible exercises help to keep the joints healthy and functionally robust. 


Arthritic patients should respect their body’s pain tolerance. They need to warm up for a longer period of time and may be more comfortable exercising in a warmer environment. They should check their pain levels 2 hours after exercises. Appropriate rest or reduction in vigour or duration of exercise is required to fine-tune the exercise program.


Arthritic patients should include a variety of activities to prevent boredom and remain consistent. Some ways to increase compliance including using your support network by exercising with a friend or joining community based programs for arthritis.

Arthritic and osteporosis patients should consult a doctor before engaging in any form of exercises.



Written by John Chow,  a practitioner of Chinese medicine, acupuncturist, masseur, healer and teacher of martial arts and spiritual paths in Melbourne, Australia.

Copyright:-  No part of this article can be used, quoted, copied in any form without the permission from the author.  For further information on this article, please contact John Chow  at  vajra_master@yahoo.com.


Legal caveat:-

The information provided above is for general reference only. Although the author(s) has attempted to be as thorough as possible in compiling the information in this article(s), no legal responsibility nor liability is accepted for any errors or omissions. The information is presented for educational purposes only. Please refer any medical matter to your doctor before acting on any health-related information.