Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on March 30, 2017


Harvard Medical School: "5 weight training tips for people with arthritis."<br> Arthritis Foundation: "Best Exercises for Rheumatoid Arthritis," "How To Beat Fatigue."<br> "Exercise for Rheumatoid Arthritis."<br> AudioJungle

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SPEAKER: When you have rheumatoid arthritis, working out really can improve your life. Here's how. Your chances of getting heart disease go up when you have RA, so fight back by getting cardio exercise. You'll boost your heart health and your energy. Gradually work up to at least four days a week.

Next, power up your muscles with strength training. This can ease pain and reduce stress in your joints. Aim to lift weight at least twice a week.

Finally, make stretching a habit. Warm up for 5 minutes first, then hold each stretch for 10 to 20 seconds. You'll have less stiffness, more flexibility, and you'll keep your joints moving well.

So, ready to exercise? Talk to your doctor. Once you get started, be sure to rest when your symptoms flare.