Although the fatigue and chronic pain from fibromyalgia may make exercise off-putting, it’s important to maintain your fitness and remain physically active in order to help you to manage your fibromyalgia. However, if the thought of the gym is enough to put you off exercising, these home workouts for fibromyalgia will motivate you to get moving, stay fit and reduce pain in the comfort of your own home.
Is Exercise Good For Fibromyalgia?
You might be concerned that doing a home workout might make your fibromyalgia symptoms flare up, however, regular, low-impact exercise can actually help to ease the pain associated with fibromyalgia.
If you’re starting a new exercise regime, it’s important to start slowly, working out just a few days per week to help your body to adjust.
The Best Home Workouts for Fibromyalgia
Low-Impact Aerobic Exercises
Low-impact aerobic exercises are perfect for those with fibromyalgia. From cycling on a stationary bike to walking around your garden, there are plenty of aerobic exercises that can be done from home.
Aerobic exercise is ideal for those suffering from fibromyalgia, as it boasts the following benefits:
- Burns calories to help maintain a healthy weight
- Keeps the muscles moving, helping to reduce stiffness and chronic pain
- Can reduce the severity of future flare ups
- Releases endorphins, which act as natural painkillers
You should aim to do a maximum of 30 minutes of aerobic activity around three times per week, depending on your current fitness level and symptoms. However, if you’re new to exercise, then you should start off with just 5-10 minutes of exercise a couple of times a week to build your fitness up and avoid putting too much pressure on your body.
Low-impact yoga, such as Hatha yoga is ideal for those with fibromyalgia. Hatha yoga focuses on the mind and body, helping to reduce stress, keep the muscles moving and improve flexibility, making it perfect for those looking for a low-impact exercise to reduce the symptoms of fibromyalgia.
Some of the main health benefits of yoga include:
- Improved strength and muscle tone
- Increased flexibility
- Reduced stress and anxiety
- Can decrease inflammation in the body
- Is thought to reduce chronic pain
Whether you’re a seasoned yogi, or a complete newbie, there are hundreds of online tutorials and classes for all abilities, meaning you can tailor your yoga workout to your individual strengths in the comfort of your own home.
Resistance training is great for those with fibromyalgia as it helps to build strength, stretch the muscles and can even improve pain tolerance. All you’ll need to perform resistance training exercises at home is:
- Hand weights (1-3kg weights)
- Resistance bands
- A chair
With just a few pieces of equipment, you can get your muscles moving and improve your fitness and strength at home. It’s important to stick to low weights and resistance and focus on the movement so that you’re getting your muscles moving without overworking them.
If you feel like you can, you should perform more repetitions at a lower weight, rather than increasing your weight or resistance until you feel as though your body is strong enough. However, it’s important to note that every time you move up a weight, you should lower your repetitions to give your body time to adapt. At a lower weight, 3 sets of 15-20 repetitions is recommended, however, 3 sets of 8-10 repetitions should be the maximum when using a heavier weight.
Before starting your resistance training session, it’s important to warm up your joints and muscles by moving your hands and feet in slow circular motions until all of your joints are moving well, along with stretches of the arms, legs, hips and lower back.
Once you’re ready to move, there are plenty of resistance exercises to choose from. You should aim to perform resistance exercises 1-2 times per week depending on your current fitness level, and try to work different muscle groups each time to give your body plenty of time to recover in-between sessions.
So whether you invest in a stepping machine or stationary bike to carry out your aerobic exercise, or you enrol in an online yoga course – there are plenty of low-impact home workouts for those with fibromyalgia.
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