As we approach the holidays and New Year, colder temperatures encourage us to move our exercise routines indoors. This time last year, you may have prepared for winter by scheduling regular visits to your local gym or fitness center. COVID-19, has changed the rules.
Though the first vaccines are currently in distribution, wide availability is forthcoming. Nonetheless, some exercise venues have reopened with stringent policies for patrons. For those living with chronic joint pain, regular exercise can help keep aches and stiffness at bay. Whether you choose to exercise indoors at a facility or at home, take care to do so safely.
First, and perhaps most importantly, if you do not feel well reconsider going to a gym or other public space. Symptoms of COVID include the following:
- Fever, high temperatures
- Cough and/or shortness of breath
- Headaches and/or body aches
- Loss of taste or smell
Symptoms of flu are similar, but can include fatigue, chills, and congestion. If you feel you may have been infected with the coronavirus consider getting tested as soon as possible.
If you do not have the virus and choose to patronize a fitness center for use of their equipment, know what policies are set up when you go. Bring your own filled water bottle and avoid using public fountains. Maintain social distancing from other patrons and make sure any equipment used is sanitized. When you complete a station, sanitize the equipment per the venue’s policies before moving on to the next one.
If your facility has a mask policy, wear one that is comfortable yet effective. If you feel stifled during your workout, you may wish to take a few minutes outside to breathe, or else adjust your workout time. Alternatively, exercising from home may offer you a more comfortable environment. Everyday items around the house can substitute as weights if necessary.
Joint pain doesn’t have to spoil the holiday, or the New Year. The physicians and physical therapists at Bon Secours Virginia Orthopaedic and Spine Specialists are here to help. Contact us today for more information on our procedures for reducing joint and back pain.