Arthritis is a progressive joint disease that can vary in severity. According to news-medical.net, close to 60 percent of Americans over the age of 65 are affected by some form of the condition. It's the leading cause of disability in the United States and makes everyday tasks like dressing and grasping items difficult. Exercise, however, is helpful if you're living with rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis.
Create a plan with your doctor for slowing down the condition. Depending on the severity of the arthritis, you'll be advised to participate in various activities.
Consider a vigorous exercise routine. According to news-medical.net, a lack of such exercises caused study participants' conditions to worsen. Without physical exercise, you can experience bone loss and weight gain.
Choose activities that strengthen your muscles while still reducing stress and protecting your joints. For example, working out your hamstrings or quadriceps by bicycling, swimming or walking will protect your hips and knees.
Stretch before participating in physical activity. Hold different muscle and joint groups for 10 to 30 seconds each to improve flexibility and act as the basis for the workout.
Work on range-of-motion exercises such as those suggested by UW Washington. These will prevent the loss of mobility. The joints are stretched further over time until they can move and bend as normally as possible.
Supplement your diet with glucosamine and chondroitin. The natural substances may slow down the bone turnover that occurs with arthritis.