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Which Exercises Work Best for Fibromyalgia?

Woman suffering from chronic pain in AlabamaStudies have shown that exercise is an effective way to manage the symptoms of fibromyalgia over the long run. That being said, plenty of fibro patients are tentative about implementing a new routine, because strenuous exercise can often cause heighten some chronic pain symptoms. This is why you should talk to your doctor about what type of exercise would be best to pursue.

Sticking to a regular routine of aerobic exercise helps improve a person’s circulation and can reduce some of the tender points that fibromyalgia produces. This may sound like the better choice from the start, but we’d recommend looking into lower-impact cardio exercises such as:

  • Biking
  • Walking
  • Elliptical workouts
  • Swimming

Water Aerobics for Fibromyalgia

Doing Water Aerobics for FibromyalgiaIn particular, research has supported the benefits that fibro patients can gain from regular routines involving some form of water-based activity. Things like water running and water aerobics are much less stressful on the joints and provide a more relaxing environment for working out.

If you’re interested in water aerobics or some other form of low-impact cardio exercise, you need to remember just how important it is that you measure your routine out appropriately. Some people can get over eager and form a routine that is just a little too demanding for them to keep up with. The initial start is so critical when it comes to forming a new habit that will be maintained in the long run.

(Quick Fact: A recent study showed that motion-controlled video games could also help people with fibromyalgia.)

A great starting routine for someone who has been diagnosed with fibromyalgia would be 30 to 60 minutes of aerobic exercise 2 to 3 times a week. You want to start off slow and add on in increments as you become more comfortable with the routine. Also, a person’s energy levels may vary widely with a condition like fibromyalgia.

Resistance Training with Fibromyalgia

Studies have shown that strength or resistance training can be used to reduce a patient’s sensitivity to pain. At the same time, these workouts will preserve the muscle mass that human beings naturally lose overtime (it’s a particular concern for patients living with fibromyalgia).

We’re not too surprised to find that this is a form of exercise that many fibro patients are quite adverse too, but some excellent routines can be completed within just 20 minutes (here’s a great one to check out). Patients should find a reduction in their most painful symptoms of they can stick to their routine. You also don’t need to get a gym membership in order to complete a good routine. There are plenty of strength training exercises that can be completed from home with no extra equipment.

Mind Body Exercises

Mind-Body Exercises you can do with FibromyalgiaFibromyalgia produces such a broad range of symptoms that no two cases are ever quite alike. This means that no two patients can be treated the exact same way and that different exercises work for different people. The final group of exercises we are going to be covering today are known as mind-body exercises, such as:

  • Yoga
  • Tai Chi
  • Pilates

Yoga, for instance, combines low-impact resistance and flexibility exercises with meditation and deep-breathing routines. While these may not replace the traditional cardiological benefits of other aerobic exercises, they can provide excellent benefits as a supplement to your normal routine.

Of course, these exercises are only going to account for a single (albeit important) piece of the fibromyalgia puzzle. It’s exactly why we continue to conduct clinical trials here in Birmingham. While there are still so many more questions for us to answer, we can say that a balanced approach to fibromyalgia treatment seems to be the most effective.

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