Resource Exercise Exercise is important not just to reduce the risk of further joint damage but for reducing the risk of heart disease, improving muscle strength and mental wellbeing too. There are exercises for people at all stages of their RA journey. Print Introduction by Ailsa Bosworth, Founder & National Patient Champion: Welcome to the NRAS exercise section of our website. My name is Ailsa Bosworth, and I founded the society in 2001. I like you live with rheumatoid arthritis and was diagnosed in “1983”. At the time I was a new mum, and to very honest with you, exercise was the last thing on my mind. I’ve had many joint replacements and procedures since I was first diagnosed as my RA was quite aggressive, and of course, I didn’t have access to the revolutionary treatments that are available today. So for those of you who are more recently diagnosed you should be able to look forward to a relatively active and healthy life with RA, and that’s the key to not just relying on the drug therapies but also looking at what you can do for yourselves to keep active and healthy – exercise being a very key component to ensuring you get the very best out of your treatments and therapies. For those of you like me that have to live with the historical joint damage from our RA, you may well be thinking exercise can’t do much for me the damage is done but believe me when I say that exercise is so very important not just to reduce the risk of further joint damage but for reducing the risk of cardio vascular disease; improve muscle strength and can help to improve your mental wellbeing too. Exercise is for us all no matter at what stage of your journey with RA there is something you and I can do so let’s find out. The next few sections and video clips will give you examples of simple and more adventurous exercises with the expert guidance of Jessica, Physiotherapist. Remember you don’t have to do everything, but you/we should be doing SOMETHING. Video Exercise videos Starting an exercise regime can be daunting for anyone with a condition such as RA, but exercise has many benefits and is recommended for people with all types of arthritis. Our exercise videos give you some simple exercises that you can do from home. Article The importance of exercise Physical activity and exercise are good for people with all forms of arthritis as it can help to ease some of the symptoms and improve general health. Article Where do I begin? The exercises on this website have been created specifically with people with RA in mind allowing for a broad spectrum of abilities. The amount of exercise you can do will depend on your disease activity, severity and duration. Article Exercise and rheumatoid arthritis There is a lot of evidence now showing that physical activity is safe and has many benefits for people with RA. Physical activity improves RA symptoms and lowers the risk of developing heart disease. Article The role of a health and fitness professional for people with musculoskeletal conditions A fitness professional will aim to devise a programme that will help you manage exercise around your condition. They will ensure that you work through your exercise session safely and at a level that allows you to exercise pain-free, as well as recover from the session. Article Tai Chi for arthritis Studies have shown the Tai Chi for Arthritis programme to relieve pain, improve quality of life and balance. Read more Diet → There is a huge amount of dietary advice aimed at people with RA. This article summarises some of the dietary advice for which there is evidence of benefit for people with RA.