Exercise is an increasingly important part of a modern (and frequently sedentary) life. Not only does it help make you stronger and manage your weight, it can affect your mood and memory. When you live with a circulation condition like peripheral arterial disease (PAD), it can play an even bigger role in helping you manage the problem and deal with the painful symptoms in your lower limbs.
Exercise is one of the most effective ways to help reduce and improve symptoms of PAD. Not only does it boost your circulation, it helps your lower limbs learn to work more efficiently. This allows them to function better, despite circulation issues. Exercises for PAD have to be done carefully, however, so you don’t hurt yourself in the process.
Walking – This is the best exercise you can do for painful symptoms like cramping when you’re active. Although it can be uncomfortable, over time, walking increases your muscles’ oxygen efficiency and allows you to do more.
Leg exercises – Static and dynamic leg exercises help improve and strengthen muscles weakened by poor circulation. This is helpful on its own, but it works best as a supplement to regular walking.
Biking – Biking is a cardio activity that increases your heart rate and boosts your circulation, helping your heart pump more blood throughout your limbs.
Stair climbing – This activity helps both build your muscles and raise your heart rate. Again, this works well as a supplement to other exercises for your circulation.
For every exercise, you’ll have to start slowly and improve your abilities over time. These are most effective when done together, as part of an overall plan to monitor and manage your PAD. Our team at Gulf South Foot & Ankle, LLC will help you learn and perform these exercises safely so you can improve over time. If you’re struggling with circulation issues in your lower limbs, exercise might be just what you need. Contact our Metairie, LA, office today for an appointment to discuss exercise and other care. Just call (504) 708-4810 or use our website to reach us.