Five ways to improve your joint health
Do you feel stiff when you get out of bed in the morning? Have you noticed your body starting to ache? Read on for five ways you can improve your joint health.
Modern advances may made our lives easier, but they’ve also made us more sedentary than ever before. With many of us sitting more and moving less, it’s no surprise that musculoskeletal conditions are on the rise, and are the leading cause of disability in the UK.
Research shows that for people with musculoskeletal conditions such as arthritis, engaging in appropriate physical activity reduces pain, improves quality of life, and strengthens the muscles and joints.
Whilst exercise can contribute to the rehabilitation of musculoskeletal conditions, regular physical activity at every stage of life can reduce the risk of developing issues in the first place. Flexibility and mobility support our whole system of movement so it’s important to incorporate targeted exercises that support these functions.
Why mobility and flexibility are so important
According to Katie Knapton, a chartered physiotherapist with over 30 years of musculoskeletal experience and founder of PhysioFast Online, mobility is really important in helping the body to function properly.
Mobility refers to a joint’s ability to move freely through its range of motion. Not being able to have full function of a joint can cause difficulty when performing physical activities, so increasing mobility should be a priority, especially if you have upcoming North Sydney physio appointments to aid in your recovery and improvement.
Flexibility, on the other hand, is the ability of the muscles, ligaments, and tendons to elongate through the range of motion. Flexibility will benefit your joints by helping you achieve good mobility. Keeping joints mobile not only helps to keep them healthy but can also decrease pain and reduce the risk of injury.
Katie has teamed up with GOPO® Joint Health to develop a 12-Week Flex and Mobility Plan to support positive changes in joint health.
With a focus on flexibility and mobility, the carefully curated plan encompasses simple, easy-to-implement stretches and exercises, alongside the use of clinically-backed supplement, GOPO® Joint Health. You can download a copy of the plan here.
Five tips to improve your joint health
It you are looking for additional ways to feel fitter, flexible and more mobile Katie shares these five tips.
1) Find ways to stay flexible
Maintaining mobility and preventing disability are key to living independently as we age. Our natural strength and flexibility decrease with age, but our ability to become stronger and more flexible stays the same – it’s all about consistent training.
So look for ways you can support flexibility that fit into your routine, whether that be attending regular yoga or Pilates classes or adding specific supporting movements into your workout.
2) Stretch daily
Regular targeted stretching can help increase your flexibility, which is crucial for overall mobility. Try to spend 10-15 minutes per day focusing on stretching. You could implement a cool down stretching routine to complement a workout or just practice some movements whilst waiting for the kettle to boil!
3) Pay attention to your body
Don’t push yourself so much that you’re in pain; movements can be adapted depending on your ability. Starting off small and progressing slowly is a great way to really feel the difference.
4) Stay hydrated
Proper hydration helps your muscles and joints respond to flexibility training more effectively. Because your joints contain synovial fluid, which is made up of water, proper hydration helps your joints feel more mobile.
5) Seek help
If you’re struggling with your mobility and it’s affecting your day-to-day life, a physiotherapist may be able to help. Physiotherapy will support yourmobility and independence with everyday tasks by improving muscle strength, joint flexibility, balance and coordination through targeted exercises.
A physiotherapist can also advise on any equipment that will facilitate your mobility and ensure that you are safe.