exercise can ease osteoarthritisExercise is probably the leading treatment for osteoarthritis. While moving around may seem like the last thing you want to do when you’re in pain, “studies show that simple activities like walking around the neighborhood or taking a fun, easy exercise class can reduce pain and help maintain (or attain) a healthy weight.” 4 Since more weight causes more stress to the joints, weight control is an important factor when it come to battling osteoarthritis. Strengthening exercises can also prevent excess stress to the joints, which in turn reduces the pain. Some common forms of exercise are light aerobics and strength training. Aerobics is an easy way to exercise and also strengthens muscles and reduces weight, therefore it treats osteoarthritis from both angles. As a bonus, aerobics also improves stamina and energy. Stretching the joints as well as other exercises that flex the joints will help reduce osteoarthritis and relieve pain. A light walk around the block is also something that isn’t difficult to do and can be a nice alternative to exercising at home. If you feel up to it, you could even add some ankle weights to maximize the positives from your walk. Stretching is also simple and easy to do in your own time, but please make sure that you don’t overextend any joints or muscles during your routine. If you feel like you may be doing something wrong, immediately stop and re-evaluate or consult a physician before continuing. As there is really no limit to how much or how little you exercise, it is always advisable to consult your physician before starting any sort of exercise routine. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends that everyone, including those with arthritis, get 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. However, this number is not universal, so please seek medical opinion before you dive into any exercise routine.