So many 55+ adults have some form of arthritis and I see this evidence in my Dance Aerobic classes at the various centers where I teach. Let me share with you this fact. Their attendance percentages are high, even though they were experiencing pain before coming to class. They don’t let it stop them! They find relief and enhanced mobility in activity that requires movement. This is just another reason why it’s so important for people to find a class or activity that they enjoy AND look forward to attending!
In the magazine, “WebMD,” under Health Information, Stephanie Watson writes a very interesting and informative article about arthritis. She said, “Even a little movement can do your joints a lot of good.” Also in this article, Dorothy D. Dunlop, a PhD, Professor of Medicine and Rheumatology at Northwestern University says, “For people with arthritis, being physically active will help reduce pain and joint stiffness, increase strength and improve mobility.”
In light of the above, whether you have rheumatoid arthritis (RA), an autoimmune disease, or osteoarthritis (OA), a degenerative condition, exercise can help. Let me repeat that – exercise can help! The first inclination when experiencing these symptoms is to avoid any kind of physical activity. However, by moving the effected part gently, you are helping to reduce the pain and/or stiffness. (This is why I always say to make sure you are taking a class where the instructor recommends “moving at your own pace.”) Physical activities can reduce muscle loss, which is a common problem with RA, and in the case of OA, exercise helps take excess weight off stressed joints.
So often I hear about all the fun people have at their fitness classes. They meet many new people who enjoy similar activities and make new friends with those who frequent the same fitness classes.
In June I wrote, “How to Avoid Being a Couch Potato” (June 16, 2014, www.agelessaerobicdance.com/blog/). It had a list of Ideas for Everyday Movement. The third bullet talked about Moving while Socializing i.e., instead of just meeting a friend for coffee or lunch, why not add a walk in the park or a walk in the Mall.
My Virtual Assistant, Sherry Walter, who produces all these wonderful blogs for you with photos and illustrations (I just give her the body with the words), said: “KT, I had a chance to share with one of my health care professionals about using your wonderful Chair DVD to encourage movement in the arm with lymphedema, (see Sherry’s testimonial on my Service Page) but I wished I could transport you here to Ohio because I miss the social interaction and participation in your class.”
Hi everyone! I missed you last month when I took July off from blogging to refresh and rejuvenate my mission for seniors, which is “spreading the word of the importance of moving every day for a healthy life!”
Do you know that we’re over the halfway mark to a new year? How are your healthy goals going for 2014? I am so excited about the many “baby boomers” who create and participate in various activities! In many areas of the country you see all ages hiking, swimming, playing all kinds of sports, and just getting out there and “moving”! Many people use a local mall to walk or exercise indoors, especially in areas of the country too hot or too cold to walk or exercise outdoors. A lot of people walk the mall before it is officially open. One of my classes is the perfect example. Many of the seniors, who take my 9:00am Dance Aerobic class at a Mall in Phoenix, will walk the Mall prior to class as a warm-up! Way to go class!