Don’t let your arthritis pain dictate your day-to-day activities. We know how difficult it can be to manage arthritis. This inflammatory condition typically worsens with age, causing such intense pain and stiffness that simple activities like going for a walk or playing with your children or grandchildren seem overwhelming.
By taking preventive measures—such as intentional exercise and stretching—you can ease your pain and get back to living a more enjoyable life. Here are a few exercises and stretches that we recommend to keep your joints happy and healthy.
This exercise is by far the easiest to complete, as it’s just what it sounds like! Simply spread your toes apart, hold for a few seconds, and relax. Repeat this motion 5-7 times for each foot.
Sit with your feet flat on the floor. Then, repeatedly lift your big toe off the floor and hold it up for a few seconds. After completing 5 repetitions, reverse the movement by keeping your big toe on the ground and lifting your other four toes, also repeating 5 times.
Position yourself sitting with your feet on the floor. Hold your heel with one hand and bend your toes up toward your ankle with the other. Stay in this position for a few seconds and then bring your toes back to the starting position. Reverse the motion by bending them down toward your heel and hold. Repeat these steps a few times, keeping your stretch gentle and intentional without pulling on your toes too hard.
To complete the Ankle Alphabet, sit so that your feet do not touch the floor. Once settled, imagine that your big toe is a writing utensil and trace each letter of the alphabet in the air. This exercise loosens up the ankle joint as well as those in your feet, so keep your movements small.
Although these exercises are a great starting point for alleviating discomfort, it’s very important to consult with a doctor regarding your arthritis pain. By seeking out advice early on, you can help to reduce inflammation and swelling and get back to enjoying a pain-free life. Our doctors and physical therapists are well-equipped to provide a treatment plan that is custom to your needs. If you or a loved one would like to consult with a podiatrist regarding arthritis pain, give us a call at (717) 757-3537.