Joints are made up of several types of soft tissues as well as bones. Strengthening joints involves improving the strength and mobility of such tissues and combating degenerative conditions such as arthritis. Strengthening muscles that surround the joints is a great way to improve the overall strength, durability, and mobility of that joint, as is strengthening the ligaments within the joint. Ligaments are responsible for promoting normal joint function as well as limiting the motion of that joint. Strengthening joints starts with determining exercises and activities that will promote growth without damage or pain.
The muscles surrounding the joints should be strengthened and toned by exercising them regularly. Strengthening joints usually involves a workout routine that will involve resistance training or weight training. Knee joints, for example, can be strengthened by building muscle in the thighs and calves. These muscles help support the knee joints, so strengthening joints in this manner will involve exercises like squats, lunges, calf raises, and even running or biking. Doing these exercises improperly, however, can lead to injury, which will in turn weaken the joints instead. Beginners should consult a professional trainer whenever possible, or work with a more experienced person who can demonstrate proper technique.
Resistance exercises are extremely useful for strengthening joints. Gyms and fitness centers often feature a wide array of exercise machines that use weights or cable resistance units, and these machines are great for strengthening joints quickly and efficiently. If a person does not have access to a gym or fitness center, he or she may want to consider using exercise resistance bands, which are lengths of elastic material with handles on either end. These bands can be attached to fixed objects and then secured around an arm or a leg to provide resistance during exercise motions. They are inexpensive, compact, and easy to use.
Exercise alone may not be enough for strengthening joints. Adjusting one's diet can also go a long way toward promoting joint health. Foods rich in calcium are good for bone strength, and other vitamins and minerals can help improve the overall health of soft tissues within the joints. Avoiding fatty foods and simple sugars is good not only for the joints but also for normal functioning of the rest of the body. A dietitian will be well equipped to help a person develop a healthy diet that will promote bone strength and joint health.