With winter on it’s way, many may be dreading the cold, particularly if you experience joint pain. As the cooler temperatures set in you may find your ankles becoming stiff, or your knees becoming painful. This is a common occurrence among many.
Experts propose that in colder weather, for the body to conserve heat, it will send more blood to the center of the body. To do so, blood vessels in the extremities will constrict. Less blood flow to these areas can then create feelings of stiffness, discomfort and joint pain.
Winter aches and joint pain may have a negative impact on our motivation and activity levels. Which in turn may cause further joint pain or injury recurrence.
Common Causes of winter joint pain and discomfort
Cold weather tightens structures that support the spine. Furthermore, back and neck injuries can be related to a lack of physical activity. Excessive amounts of sitting can not only contribute to chronic diseases but also be a major contributor to back pain.
A common type of arthritis is osteoarthritis. It is a condition in which the cartilage that cushions our joints wastes away, leading to bone on bone contact.
How you can help with joint pain and injury prevention?
- Keep moving and get regular exercise
- Perform an adequate warm up
- Progress training appropriately. Don’t do too much too quickly.
- Maintain good posture and form during exercise
How can a physiotherapist help with joint pain and injury prevention?
Physiotherapists are specialists in the way the body works. They identify injury or the potential for injury in the body and work with you to build the life you want. Physiotherapists enable you to live an independent life by
- Teaching you self-management strategies to prevent injury.
- Designing individualised clinical strength and conditioning programs that target strength, flexibility, optimising movement patterns and overall improve bio-mechanical efficiency and increased postural awareness.
If you’re concerned about injury during the winter season and would like to find out more about injury prevention contact us about a free 20 minute injury screen before the end of April.