high intensity interval training

The 15-Minute Arthritis Workout

When it comes to exercise, sometimes less is more. Research suggests a workout that’s just 15 minutes can pay off – if you do it right. These workouts often involve high-intensity interval training (HIIT) – short bursts of hard effort, which have been shown to burn more calories than the slow and steady approach, says Matt Likins, an orthopedic physical therapist and partner of 1st Choice Physical Therapy in Michigan.

A study published in 2016 in PLoS One, found that people who did 10 minutes of sprint intervals on a stationary bike had heart-healthy benefits similar to those who biked for 50 minutes at a steady pace.

Consult an Expert

Ask your doctor if HIIT is safe for you; many shorter workouts feature high-impact moves that can strain joints. A physical therapist or personal trainer “can check that you’re doing the moves correctly,” says Heather L. Tyler, a personal trainer in Los Angeles, who has rheumatoid arthritis and trains clients who have arthritis. Moving quickly can compromise form, which can set the stage for injury.

Mix Up your Routine

Although you still need at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week, short workouts are “a good starting point to build from,” Likins says, or to pair with a 15-minute walk later in the day.

Learn more about how to get started with a exercise plan that’s right for you.


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