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Home Knowledge Center Wellness Library Modifying Activities for Osteoarthritis

Modifying Activities for Osteoarthritis

Overview

If your joints hurt when you do an activity, you can do a number of things to help yourself.

  • Use the largest joints or strongest muscles to do things.
    • When you lift a heavy object off the floor, use your hip and knee muscles, not your back.
    • When you carry a bag of groceries, use the palm of your hand or your forearm instead of grasping it with your fingers.
    • Push doors open with your hip or shoulder instead of your hand or arm.
  • Break bigger tasks into several smaller tasks.

    Rest between tasks.

  • Use electric tools.

    Electric tools such as can openers, blenders, power tools, and sewing machines can make it easier to open cans, mix things, do home repairs, or sew.

  • Try not to stand for a long period of time.

    And try not to kneel or squat.

    Sit or take regular breaks when doing tasks that take a long time.

  • Use higher chairs or seat cushions.

    Avoid sitting in chairs that are very low.

  • Go a shorter distance when you walk, jog, swim, or do another activity.
  • Break up an exercise or activity.

    For example, you might take two or three short walks in a day rather than one long walk. Or do a shorter workout, then rest and do a little more later.

  • Make an activity less intense.

    Decrease your speed when you jog, walk, run, or swim. If you lift weights, don't lift as much weight.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

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