A. The program that’s best for you depends on the type of arthritis you have. It also depends on which joints are affected, and how severe your arthritis is. Your healthcare provider, physical therapist, or rehabilitation specialist can help decide the best exercise program for you. Talk with your healthcare provider before starting an exercise program. People with arthritis often benefit from range-of-motion, strengthening, and endurance exercises:
These reduce stiffness and help keep your joints flexible. Controlled stretching
promotes a normal range of motion. This is the amount your joints can be moved in
Strengthening exercises. These help maintain or increase muscle strength.
Endurance exercises. These
exercises strengthen your heart. They give you more energy so you can exercise or
be physically active longer without tiring as quickly. Walking, exercising in
water, and riding a stationary bike are some of the best exercises for people with
Note: If you haven’t been
exercising regularly or you have pain, stiffness, or weakness that interrupts your daily
activities, get your healthcare provider’s approval. Then start your exercise program
with range-of-motion and strengthening exercises only.