Many of us were high school athletes. And many of us still revel in memories of those days on the field, in the gym, or on the court. The dream of being carried on the shoulders of our teammates never really ends.
Over the years, reality sets in. No matter how hard we try to stay in shape, our joints seem to age more quickly than the rest of us. However, it's important to keep your mobility, especially when joint problems set in.
Just because our knees and ankles crackle like breakfast cereal, our hips ache, and our backs are prone to stiffening up and making us move like a robot doesn't mean we can't get in a good workout!
In fact, with the right equipment, we can all go from fragile to agile again!
Working out with Joint Problems
G&G Fitness Equipment Experts can work with orthopedic concerns, though your physician is the best person to consult if you have special needs. Whether that old football injury still plagues you, or the over-zealous high kick on the court during a half time performance haunts you even now, you can still stay in shape and get that endorphin high you crave when you have the right equipment. It's okay to workout with joint problems.
The phrase to keep in mind is "the right equipment." Good equipment is biomechanically designed to help, not hurt, your joints.
Whether you've been an athlete all your life, or are just starting a workout program, and you have some joint pain, remember:
- Mild joint pain when you're starting a workout is typical. Many people find that when they start moving their joints are a bit stiff, but as they move and the joints begin to lubricate, the discomfort subsides.
- If you find that the pain is not getting better as you move, try another exercise.
- If the pain does not get better (or intensifies) with a different exercise, stop the workout.
Over the years, the treadmill has gotten a bad rap. People say that it's bad for the knees, ankles, and hips, but that doesn't have to be the case. A well-maintained treadmill that has the right features can be fun and safe. In fact, a treadmill for bad knees can be a safer bet than many other forms of exercise.
When you have joint issues, find a treadmill with great shock absorption. A treadmill has an advantage over walking or running on the open road because, when the terrain changes during your walk (as it does outdoors), it can cause a person to change their stride too much and cause joint damage. Confused about choosing a treadmill? Contact us or check out The Ultimate Treadmill Buyers Guide.
Other advantages to using a great treadmill include:
- It is easy to use. Press start and you're off.
- Many have preset workout programs
- You can listen to your favorite music and not have to worry about listening for cars or that old junkyard dog, Spike, down the road.
- It's great for beginners. You can walk at any pace and easily change that pace, keeping your stride consistent for longer.
Finally, if back pain plagues you, using a treadmill for a bad back is a great idea. It can help shed extra pounds that may be contributing to that bad back while keeping you loose and limber.
The elliptical is another great option. Especially for certain joints — an elliptical for bad knees, for example, seems to be the perfect way to get in shape.
You can use an elliptical for back issues too. The combination of your legs and arms working in concert can really help loosen the muscles in your back. Once again, it is imperative that you have the right elliptical for your situation. A jockey may need a different elliptical than a basketball player. And the settings must be right in order for the elliptical to be comfortable, fun, and effective.
As you're choosing your exercise equipment, keep in mind some other options besides the big two.
- Rowing machines offer a great workout for your entire body without putting much pressure on your lower joints.
- Stability balls can help with stretching and strengthening your core
- Weights can build muscles, strengthening the areas around the joints for more stability down the road
Whether you have an acute injury or chronic pain, you can still workout with joint problems. Be sure to get the right equipment and you can be on your way back to a healthy lifestyle.
Note: G&G Fitness does not offer medical advice. Always consult your physician.
- Working Out Through Pain, Arthritis Foundation
- Physical activity and exercise for chronic pain in adults National Institute of Health
Looking for more ways to improve your fitness routine? Talk with experts at G&G Fitness Equipment today for more inspiration.