Our joints are essential for our mobility. If we have joint problems, the mobility is very quickly very limited. Shock loads, i.e. sudden, hard, violent loads are really bad. Nevertheless, sporting activity is possible even with joint pain if you approach it carefully, make a few modifications and do it consistently.
The human body has around 140 joints, the most famous of which are elbows, ankles, wrists, hips, knees, shoulders or the spine. For most people, the joints work fine until they are damaged. The most well-known joint diseases are rheumatism and osteoarthritis, but overloading through too much or incorrectly exercising can damage our joints. The good news: Exercise is still possible and should even be done. Therefore, there are few things that you should keep in mind that:
Cartilage: grease for the joints
It is the articular cartilage that enables us to move. They are like a sponge filled with water. If the joint is put under pressure, it presses on the cartilage and from it fluid enters the joint space. In this way the joint is lubricated. However, the longer the cartilage is in one position, the more it is squeezed out, thereby damaging it.
Which is bad for the cartilage
Our cartilages are really strained and in the long term break if they are regularly exposed to hard, sudden impact loads, but also sports in which the joint remains in one position for too long are suboptimal.
Unfortunately, the joints themselves cannot be trained well. But what is definitely helpful is to strengthen the surrounding muscles, because this has a positive effect on the joint, as it is relieved by a strong muscle structure.
Sports that are gentle on the joints
If you already have joint damage, you should also look for sports in which there are few stressful movements. The best example of this is swimming. There are no hard impact loads and our body weight is reduced in the water, which further relieves the joints. An alternative to this is aqua aerobics. It is especially good for people who are very overweight because the resistance of the water makes it strenuous without putting too much strain on the joints.
But it doesn’t always have to be a water sport. There are also many options on land to train in a way that is gentle on the joints. These include, for example
- To go biking
Exercise with a Theraband
It is optimal to have the problem joint examined by a doctor. So you can then choose a sport that does not put any strain on this joint. It is Z. B. Not a good idea to play tennis if you have shoulder pain. Jogging, for example, would be better here, but this is bad for knee pain.
With medical assistance, you can also find out whether joint damage is really responsible for the pain. Pain can also be caused by incorrect technique or an unstable joint.
If there is only one sport that arouses passion in you, and you definitely do not want to do without it, despite joint pain, there is always the possibility of modifying the sport. Instead of jogging, if you have knee problems you can switch to walking – or you can change the surface. In contrast to a paved road, a dirt road or meadow offers suspension without having too many obstacles (as is the case with forest floor, for example).
Listen to the body
In the long run, the most important thing is still that we listen to our bodies. Pain is always a sign that something is not good. Perhaps the strain is too much for our current training condition or we have injured ourselves. The dose makes the poison and, after all, there is always an alternative exercise where the pain may not occur.