By: Tami Charbonnet
Photos: Milestone Photography
Model: Tonia Bonvillain
Research shows that arthritis patients who stretch regularly and strength train have less pain than those who are sedentary. Exercise can boost your mood, strengthen muscles around painful joints and improve overall joint function. Here are four exercises you can do at home to build strength and decrease pain caused by arthritis. As always, consult a doctor before starting an exercise plan.
Upper Back and Shoulder Stretch
- Stand tall.
- Bring elbows out to sides even with shoulders. Turn forearms upward and fingertips toward ceiling, creating a W shape. Tuck chin in and squeeze shoulder blades together, drawing elbows downward.
- Repeat 5 to 10 repetitions.
Standing Triceps Kickbacks
- Stand with heels slightly outside hips. Ground down through heels. Keep knees soft. Tip from hips and bring weights in line with shoulders. Keep elbows in tight and lift to ribs.Locking elbows, press weights toward hips. Do not rush this movement.
- Come to floor onto knees and hands. Tuck in chin, take a deep breath in and lift the spine by bringing belly button into body. Exhale and release.
- Repeat 5- 10 deep breaths.