Best Exercises for RA

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What types of exercise are best for someone with RA?

John H. Klippel, MD
One of the exercises that I think that people with Rheumatoid Arthritis, or even the public at large, hasn't paid a lot of attention to is walking. We're a society that is so accustomed to getting in a car or using an elevator or an escalator. Simple walking and moving your joints, not only is a great way to uh reduce fatigue, reduce pain and swelling, but to help with attitude. So, 30 minutes walking every single day is a great way for most people to get started. For some people, we recognize that particularly for those with a lot of joint damage, they are likely going to have to exercise in a swimming pool. And so the Arthritis Foundation has an aquatics program for people with various forms of arthritis who may want to start exercising in a pool. Adding strength training at some point for many people is a way to be helpful, but physical activity is extremely important and under utilized by most people with Rheumatoid Arthritis. It's a great way to reduce pain, relieve swelling, maintain muscle strength. And for many people it's a way to improve quality of life.