Home Bones, Joints and MusclesOsteoarthritis Causes, symptoms and recommended exercises for osteoarthritis

Causes, symptoms and recommended exercises for osteoarthritis

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

Osteoarthritis, also known as osteoarthritis, is the most common form of arthritis and is a degenerative joint disorder. This disease is characterized by causing a lot of pain, inflammation and limitation in joint movement. Although osteoarthritis can occur in any joint, it is generally more common to affect the hands, knees, hips, or spine.

Cartilage is a tissue that covers the bones in a joint, osteoarthritis wears down the cartilage to the point that it causes the bones to rub against each other, which can permanently damage the joint, not counting the pain that it entails. One of the best tips to treat osteoarthritis is to mobilize the joint, for this reason in this FastlyHealarticle we present the recommended exercises for osteoarthritis .

Causes of osteoarthritis

Among the main causes of osteoarthritis we have:

  • Joint injuries .
  • Overweight , as the extra weight can cause cartilage wear or tear.
  • Aging.
  • Those jobs that involve standing or squatting for a long time , going up and down stairs, carrying heavy objects or walking, can cause osteoarthritis in old age.
  • It is a hereditary condition , therefore, if a direct relative has suffered or suffers from this disease, it is likely that you will also suffer from it.
  • Having practiced sports that directly impact a joint, such as basketball and soccer on the ankles and knees or rugby on the shoulder.
  • Diseases such as hemophilia, avascular necrosis, gout, rheumatoid arthritis, and any other condition that prevents blood flow to the joint.

If you want to delve deeper into the causes of this disease, we encourage you to read the following article, about the types and symptoms of osteoarthritis .

Symptoms of osteoarthritis

Much of the symptoms of osteoarthritis derive from the causes of the disease, depending on why it has appeared. However, there are a series of symptoms that are very frequent and appear in most osteoarthritis processes:

  • Muscle stiffness
  • Limitation of joint movement.
  • Inflammation of the joint
  • Pain worsens after exercise or when pressure or force is applied to the joint.
  • Grinding or grinding sound when moving the joint.
  • Morning stiffness that may take up to 30 minutes to go away after waking up.
  • When the joint is inflamed, morning stiffness can last up to an hour.
  • When osteoarthritis is very advanced, pain can be present both at rest and during activity.

Treatment and exercises for osteoarthritis

Every person with osteoarthritis should be treated by a specialist in rheumatology , who examines the condition from time to time to keep track of its progress, improvement, intensity of pain and limitation of joint mobility. Often the treatment of osteoarthritis involves the intake of medications that allow the cartilage and fluid that surrounds the bones to regenerate to prevent the progression of the disease and total joint damage.

Because osteoarthritis is a condition that cannot be cured, some people undergo surgery to improve the condition of their joints and make them stay healthy longer. The consumption of analgesics for pain is an essential part of the treatment for osteoarthritis.

It is also recommended to apply heat and cold, get enough rest and avoid injuries that can worsen the health of the joint or eat a diet for osteoarthritis . Although osteoarthritis pain can worsen after exercise, staying active and exercising is one of the best tools they recommend for people with osteoarthritis to maintain joint and general movement. Therefore, below we explain the exercises recommended for osteoarthritis.


Physiotherapy is a very important ally in the treatment and improvement of osteoarthritis. The exercises performed in physical therapy for osteoarthritis are focused on increasing strength and joint mobility compromised by stiffness, as well as balance.

In general, specialists recommend a maximum of eight weeks with physiotherapy treatment, then they evaluate if this technique has caused any improvement and if so, the practice continues, otherwise the therapy is suspended. Another useful method is massage in the area , always carried out by a specialist, which can be a source of relief that reduces pain in the short term.


The best exercises for osteoarthritis are those that allow aerobic activity and in which the effort or weight of the person does not fall on the joint . For this reason, water gymnastics, which reduces between 80% and 90% the weight of the body because it is floating in the water, is one of the best options. This sport, in addition, prevents possible injuries because the joints are not sore when making the effort.

Because it is a low-impact discipline, it will not increase the pain in your joints after its practice and will allow you to increase your muscle mass , physical resistance, your body tone while shaping your figure. One of the best benefits of aquagym for people with osteoarthritis is that it increases the flexibility of the muscles , which favors the health of the joints.

Other benefits of aquagym

  • You can burn up to 700 calories per class.
  • It is practiced in a pool, which makes it much more fun.
  • It is much cheaper than a gym.
  • It is practiced three times a week.
  • It considerably improves the limited mobility of osteoarthritis in the knee.


Riding a bike is one of the best efforts for people with osteoarthritis as it allows the joints of the whole body to be mobilized while strengthening bones, muscles and tendons. Riding a bicycle is an aerobic sport that allows you to burn calories, increase physical endurance, improve cardiovascular health and tones the whole body to make it more resistant to falls, injuries or bone diseases.

Among the advantages of this sport, it stands out that its main function is to promote mobility of the whole body , so the benefit is generalized. In addition, you can bike around the city or practice cycling on an exercise bike, the benefit will be the same, you just have to choose the modality that you like the most. Practicing this sport three times a week offers a great improvement in joint health .

To dance!

Dancing is a much more beneficial sport than you think. In addition to putting the body in shape, practicing dance as a sports discipline allows strengthening the bones and lengthening the life of the joints , since during this exercise they do not get stressed or receive all the impact of the activity. On the contrary, dancing is an exercise that allows strength and weight to be balanced throughout the body, which undoubtedly improves mobility and endurance in people with osteoarthritis.

Other advantages of dancing

  • Increase physical endurance.
  • Promotes cardiovascular health.
  • Purifies the blood.
  • Oxygenates the skin.
  • It allows you to burn up to 800 calories per class.
  • Reduces symptoms of depression.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Recommended exercises for osteoarthritis , we recommend that you enter our Bones, Joints and Muscles category .

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