10 Tips for Managing Fibromyalgia Symptoms

2. Take Regular, Moderate Exercise

When you feel physical pain and fatigue, the last thing you might want to do is exercise. But studies consistently show that regular exercise benefits people with fibromyalgia. But it’s important not to overdo it and find the right balance instead. Light aerobic exercise has been shown to improve the quality of life for people with fibromyalgia.

A study of more than 400 women with the condition found that “light physical exercise” was associated with less physical pain and fatigue and an overall improvement in symptoms. Light exercise includes gentle walking and swimming.

You can start slowly, over a short period of time or distance, and build your flexibility over time. Pool exercise classes are believed to be the most beneficial because the water supports the body, making each movement work more forcefully for the muscles. Intense cardio exercises, such as running or a HIIT class, can be too strenuous for a person with fibromyalgia, but resistance exercises can be beneficial.

Resistance exercises, or strength training, can include bodyweight resistance exercises such as squats and lunges, as well as adding light, manageable weights. Studies show that such exercises can lead to “reduced pain, fatigue, number of weaknesses, depression, and anxiety, while increasing functional capacity and quality of life.”

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