As you age, physical activity and exercise can become nearly unbearable on your joints. 70 percent of people with joint pain, arthritis, osteoporosis and degenerative joint disease find it increasingly difficult to perform regular exercise because they lack access to educated fitness professionals, correct equipment, and appropriate exercise programs. This is increasingly alarming because for those of which who suffer from joint and bone pain, working out can dramatically improve their:
- Muscular Endurance
- Cardiovascular Endurance
- Joint Range of Motion
- Pain Management
- Body Composition
It is an unfortunate truth that as we age, our bones lose density and our joints lose the synovial fluid and natural shock absorption that makes movement pleasant and easy. Because movement becomes painful for many, a large amount of the population tends to become increasingly more inactive, which leads to unwanted abdominal fat gain as well as increased risk for heart attack, diabetes, metabolic disease and certain forms of cancer.
We have compiled a list of the top 4 exercises to avoid if you are experiencing chronic joint pain.
Although running may be very enjoyable and an excellent form of aerobic cardiovascular training; the impact from running, particularly on pavement or road, can be extremely irritating and detrimental to your joint health. Try using an elliptical or bike instead of running to help preserve you hips and kness without sacrificing your cardiovascular health.
Plyometrics (otherwise known as explosive power training) involves high-intensity jumping and is often used by athletes to improve performance. Imagine doing box jumps, sprints, or long jumps. Although plyometrics can range from low level to high level, it is not recommended for people with deteriorating joints, low bone density or arthritis to utilize this type of exercise because of its high impact on joints and susceptibility to cause stress fractures and injury.
CrossFit training is an intensive exercise program using many modes of highly technical activities like Olympic weight-lifting, gymnastics and jumping. This type of programming incorporates far too much random variation for a special population such as those who experience joint pain. Furthermore, the coaches tend to vary in experience, education and ability to modify programs from one facility to the next. This lack of specificity combined with high-intensity and high-impact exercise makes CrossFit a literal wrecking machine for those who experience degenerative joint problems.
Seated Machine Exercises
You may be surprised to hear this, but most of the seated strength training machines at your local gym are not doing much for your joint pain and many could actually be making it worse. Seated machine exercises inhibit core activation and are not functional movements. Machine exercises aim to isolate musculature rather than training movement patterns that would increase strength, range of motion, and balance in your daily activities. Additionally, many machines such as the seated leg extension over stress the joint and produce contraindicated effects.