Ideas for water exercises?

I’m positive for a group of diseases, RA, Lupus etc, and experience all-over joint and muscle pain 24/7. Still working on a solid diagnosis but the doc said exercise may help (or may make things much worse). Thanks doc! :wink:

I joined a great gym that has fun stuff like Pickleball and other group classes but when I tried them, I have such awful rebound stiffness, mental fog, and exhaustion (not during but hours/days later) that I’m struggling with how to put my nifty gym membership to good use.

One thing that has worked well is swimming! :tada: There is a lap pool, giant hot tub, sauna and steam room which all ease my pain for a bit.

Any ideas for using the pool area for exercise? So far I have been doing breast stroke and side stroke laps (due to shoulder trouble I can’t lift my left arm over my head) and then stretches in the hot tub. I’d love more ideas so that I have something different to do each day and build up to the fun stuff (did I mention Pickleball?!)

I go to Aqua Power classes twice a week where all of the body is challenged. Then when not in class I do swimming and water running. The classes use water belts and we ski and mountain climb and run marathons, and also we use water weights so you work out your upper body and abs. You can do this with or without instructors once you learn the moves. Shoulder trouble is something I have recovered from slow but sure. It takes some time but dog paddles and long arm ski have helped me so much. YAY for lap pools - I haven’t convinced my better half to put one at the house but I won’t give up :slight_smile:

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My wife teaches water aerobics at our local senior center. The pool is kept warmer to make it easier on muscles and joints. I suggest you visit YouTube and request “water aerobics for seniors.” Whether you are a senior or not, the exercises are likely to be a bit more gentle. I think you will find that these YouTube videos will provide lots of ideas for what you want to do and provide variety as well. After the class is over, the folks engage in a mean game of volleyball. Of course, each person in the group participates to the extent they feel comfortable. Opting out on some of the more strenuous exercises is OK.


The idea of a you tube visit is good, are you able to water walk? I do aerobics 3 times a week. Several people have RA and say it helps keep them moving.water is amazing in my opinion. Nancy

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Thanks! I looked into it and there are two water aerobics type classes. I’m going to try out the ‘senior’ one next week, see how it goes. :smiley:

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Someone recommended alternating between hot and cold after a workout and it really helped with my pain the next day. :tada:

I jump in the pool and do a cool down either lazy “laps” or walking/stretching. After 10 minutes of that, I go into the hot tub and keep moving my legs for 10 minutes so I don’t stiffen up. Repeat. If nothing else it feels real nice but it did seem to help reduce my joint pain the next day.

In addition to the water aerobics classes (which are a great idea), if you are enjoying doing laps you could get a flutterboard/kickboard (most public pools have some that you can borrow) and use it to suppor your upper body (since you can’t use your shoulder) and use that to do flutter kick and whip kick without arm movements. You could also hold the board with your poorly arm (and under your chest) and use your good arm to do something like freestyle/front crawl, with your head above the water. You can also turn onto your back, hold the board against your chest and tummy and do whip kick and flutter kick on your back. You could even invest in a pair of short blade training fins (if your pool allows them) to add some variety to your kicks (short blade fins encourage stronger and smoother kicks which will improve your kicks when not using the fins, and besides, going faster is always fun).

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Those are great ideas!!! I’ll give that a try