In order to protect joints and promote their long-term health, you should be mindful of caring for your joints not only while you exercise, but also simply in daily life. To accomplish this, you should aim to include activities that limit wear and tear on your joints and make a point to include joint-healthy choices. Here are five simple tips to keep in mind.
1. Stay in Motion – The golden rule of joint health: The more you move, the less stiffness you’ll have. Whether you’re reading, working, or watching TV, the key is to change positions often. Take breaks from your desk or your chair and get active. A quick lap around the office is all it takes to loosen your joints.
2. Utilize Low-Impact Exercises – Ever wonder how to pick out the best workout option for your goals? The best choices are activities that don’t pound your joints or put major stress on them. Some great options include walking, bicycling, swimming, and strength training.
3. Build Your Muscles – To give your joints better support, the best thing you can do is build up strength in the supporting muscles. Adding even the slightest amount of strength can make a world of difference in your overall joint health. A physical therapist or certified trainer can show you what moves to add to your routine and how to do them.
4. Power Up Your Core – Stronger abs and back muscles help maintain balance. That means you’re less likely to fall or get injured. Add core-strengthening exercises to your routine by utilizing abdominal, back, and hip training. Pilates and yoga are great low-impact workouts that target core muscles while also building whole-body strength.
5. Keep Your Bones Strong – Strong bones are vital to joint health. Calcium and vitamin D can help ensure your body is getting the key nutrients that it needs. Dairy products are the best sources of calcium, but if you have trouble digesting dairy, other options include green, leafy vegetables like broccoli and kale. If you don’t get enough calcium from food, you may consider adding supplements to your diet.