Did you know that cartilage (especially in the finger joints and the knee) has a very low metabolic rate? An interesting article written by San Diego physical therapist, Gunnar Mossberg, and posted on the web at SignOnSanDiego, offers that observation as a way of introducing the whys and wherefores of exercising to benefit those of you who suffer from arthritis.
As we’ve discussed on our blog, some arthritis conditions are caused when the cartilage in weight-bearing joints such as the hips and knees, as well as in the fingers, is worn away over time. This results in the type of arthritis known as osteoarthritis, which can become more pronounced as one ages.
We’ve also discussed how different types of exercise can moderate pain and discomfort associated with activities of daily living, and even give you back some of the mobility that you may have lost due to arthritis.
Mr. Mossberg suggests that low-impact exercise with a large number of repetitions is what can elevate the metabolism in cartilage. This can stimulate the production and regeneration of cartilage cells, as well as increase joint fluid, with its accompanying nutrients.
I’ll bet you never really looked at exercise for your arthritis condition quite like that before. If you knew that your exercise did more for you than simply move bones and push muscles, would you be more apt to make it a part of your daily routine?
Here are Gunnar Mossberg’s suggestions on how you can get the most bang for your exercise buck, and improve your ability to live with arthritis:
“The most effective exercises for osteoarthritis are performed multiple times a day, with many exercise repetitions, with anywhere from no resistance to moderate intensity, to avoid excessive joint compression, and there should be no increase in pain or swelling during the 24 hours after exercise.
For the knee and hip, daily light to moderate cycling is an excellent way to provide beneficial joint lubrication and stimulation. At times, braces and shoe inserts can provide additional joint protection during these activities.”
While you are faithfully doing your daily exercises and working on improving the metabolism to the cartilage in your fingers, please remember to also work on preventing further pain and discomfort. An easy way to keep your hands and fingers relaxed is to use my ergonomic UGLee Pen for any kind of writing activity, even it’s just the grocery list. The comfort grip actually allows the pen to grip you, preventing the need to hold the pen with strength, or to push down too hard when you’re writing. You’re in for a comforting and relaxing time when you write with the UGLee Pen.
(Photo credit – susansmithjones.com)