Hobbies & Activities for Arthritis

Arthritis is a common condition a lot of people have as they gradually grow older. You can gain arthritis in your fingers, wrist, knees, ankles, elbows plus more,  which can cause you a considerable amount of pain, leading to you having problems with your usual daily activities. 

To combat this, we have created a list of fun hobbies and activities for you to get involved in which will support you if you are suffering with arthritis.

Sporting & Fitness Activities 

Fitness always boosts everyone’s morale, you might not enjoy some activities but there is definitely something for everyone. If you’re suffering with arthritis in your fingers or wrist, it’s understandable how it can be difficult to do any form of exercise. However, it’s a common fact if you perform regular physical activity this will decrease your pain and increase flexibility.

Combining regular exercise with a healthy diet will be a huge boost for you too, as the nutrients you intake will help keep the joints healthier for longer. Ensuring you have a balanced healthy diet will help more than you realise, as gradually over time your overall fitness and health will improve – further reducing the arthritis pain.

A great activity to begin with is Yoga. The main objective in Yoga is to hold your body in different poses whilst controlling your breathing, as this will help release any tension, pain, stiffness. Over time you will gradually have better balance, flexibility and feel less stressed than you usually would. It’s important to bare in mind that you take a yoga class with an instructor who’s familiar with arthritis – therefore they can tell you when to modify a certain pose.

Another great exercise that helps with arthritis is cycling, and this is because it allows knee movements involved to help push fluid through the joints which suffer with arthritis. Cycling also strengthens your leg muscles and helps relieve stiffness. It’s crucial that when you’re cycling, try not to go on rough terrain as this can potentially be damaging with the high impact movements. So we advise you to stick to smoother paths or roads.

Finally, possibly the best fitness activity to do is swimming, and this is because it has zero impact on any of your joints! Swimming is an all-round sport which strengthens your entire body as the majority of your body weight is supported by water – therefore taking the pressure of your body. 

Man and woman crouched holding a ball

 

Outdoor Activities

Being outdoors always releases stress as you’re not stuck in an office or at home. During the current pandemic it’s made people realise how they took going outside for granted, and now more people than ever are eager and excited to be going outside – exploring the wilderness!

Walking and Hiking is a popular activity people do as it’s an opportunity to go on long walks in nature with your family and friends – it can be a great afternoon out! It’s great for fitness but also releases the cartilage in your knees, which will then help strengthen the muscles and build denser bones.

It’s important before you begin hiking that you warm up beforehand as you don’t want to accidentally pull any muscles or aggravate your arthritis. Also, gradually build up how far you decide to hike otherwise if you jump straight into a big walk then you will be in agony by the end of it.

Woman gardening

Furthermore, another fun activity that’s great for you if you have arthritis is gardening. Gardening is a good way to get active and it’s very positive for your physical and mental health – it’s an activity more people should get involved with! You must be cautious though, as repetitive actions can cause pain if you’re suffering with arthritis, but that is only the main risk you need to be wary of.

We recommend you take breaks with each gardening activity you decide to do so you will not cause much pain or tension on your arthritis. Also, it would be best to choose lightweight tools with long handles as this will further decrease the amount of physical work you have to do. Finally, ensure you do these activities with a friend or family member who will be able to support you in case you’re struggling with something. 

Painting and Decorating

If you’re struggling with Arthritis, it can be difficult to cope with daily activities as you will be in pain. But to avoid the pain, it’s best to try to find ways that will take your mind off it. For example, painting and decorating is considered being very therapeutic as you’re constantly designing and have a goal you want to achieve.

Setting yourself goals when you’re decorating is crucial to calming your arthritis pain, as you’ll constantly be on-the go, and eventually you could even forget you have the condition as you have become so busy! It’s important to bare in mind that painting in a certain position can potentially aggravate your condition as it’s causing the affected area a considerable amount of pain. 

To combat this, make sure you take short breaks after each activity that you do as this will help more than you realise. By having short intervals, this will keep you focused, less stressed and therefore – happy! However, if you do begin to experience a throbbing pain, swelling or tenderness in the affected area, then we strongly advise you to get in contact with your doctor so they can examine your arthritis.

Cooking 

Everybody loves food, and even more when they cook it themselves! But what’s so enjoyable about cooking food and how can this help with my arthritis? I’m glad you asked. Cooking in general takes your mind off personal issues, as you’re making sure to cut and cook the food properly so no one will get food poisoning! 

But more importantly, because you’re following a certain cooking method this naturally focuses your attention on making sure you get the method right – there is no room for error! When cooking you’re constantly in different positions, either slicing a piece of fruit or peeling some potatoes – there is plenty to be getting on with. But it’s the variety of positions which can help your arthritis.

Be aware though, that you’re not in the same position for too long as this could cause you some pain, so overall there are advantages and disadvantages to cooking. However, the good far out-ways the bad, so in this case if you do begin to feel pain – stop immediately and take it easy. It can be frustrating struggling to do something you used to be good at, but you should know that everybody needs help at some point, so don’t shy away from it!

We hope you have enjoyed reading our latest blog on hobbies & activities if you have arthritis. If you have tried any of our suggestions, then feel free to get in touch with us today!