3 Exercises That Minimize Joint Pressure
by Catherine Santino
Many people approach working out with similar short-term goals related to getting healthier, feeling confident, and gaining energy for their daily lives. As a result, a lot of folks tend to stick to the same workout routines and exercise equipment. It makes sense!
But while some high-impact movements are super effective, it's important to think long-term about how your exercises are impacting your joints, bones, and muscles. Workouts that minimize joint pressure are more important than you might think.
Low-Impact Workouts Can Help You Stay Active for Longer
When starting out in the gym, it's common to gravitate toward high-impact exercises like running in order to get fast results. While these exercises surely have benefits, doing them for a long period of time can wear out your body — particularly the joints.
That's where low-impact movements come in. Incorporating low-impact exercises can help to keep your body in tip-top shape by preventing injury and reducing the chances of getting sidelined from working out down the line.
Workouts that minimize joint pressure can also help you stay active consistently — and longer in life. As noted by Harvard Medical School, regular activity can benefit both the heart and the mind!
So, being kinder to your joints can result in more than just a pain-free workout routine; it also ups your chances of maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Exercises That Won't Cause Joint Pressure
There are tons of low-impact exercises that can be just as effective as high-impact workouts. Here are three options to get you started!
1. Stationary Bicycle
Cycling is great because it targets large muscle groups in the body without overworking the joints. It's a quick and effective cardio blast, and it can also contribute to long-term joint health.
According to the Harvard Health Blog, cycling "is a low-impact exercise that places less stress on your joints, which makes it ideal for older adults with knee or hip issues or those recovering from orthopedic injuries."
2. Suspension Training
Suspension training, which is the foundation of popular TRX workouts, uses a system of straps that leverage the user's body weight to build strength. In the short term, suspension training can both strengthen the core and burn calories. This type of workout requires you to engage your entire body to steady yourself, which is a great way to naturally work different muscle groups.
In the long term, suspension training can be an effective alternative for individuals with joint issues who can't perform high-impact cardio activities. It can also lead to increased muscular fitness — if the training is sustained over time — which has been linked to the prevention of cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
3. Rowing Machine
Inflexible muscles tend to reduce a joint's range of motion, which can contribute to poor posture. Keeping your joints healthy and flexible is a key element of long-term health, so before you jump on an ergometer or into a rowing scull, make sure you're well-versed in proper form. Planet Fitness makes it easy with their free fitness training that comes with every membership.
As always, please consult with a physician prior to beginning any exercise program. See the full medical disclaimer here.