What are the Best Exercises for Varicose Veins? Being active can relieve the pressure exerted on the lower extremities. Relieving pressure can alleviate pain associated with varicose veins. However, not all exercises routines are good for varicose veins.
Developing a walking routine is the best type of exercise for treatment of varicose veins. It is low impact and the act of walking stretches and strengthens the calf muscles, which aids in pumping blood to the heart. Other beneficial exercises include biking, elliptical and swimming. These all are beneficial for numerous reasons; biking improve blood flow the veins, the elliptical reduces stress on joints while still promoting circulation, and swimming improves circulation while allowing the legs to be horizontal.
Yoga may be beneficial for alleviating pain associated with varicose veins. Certain poses, such as inverted poses, also promote improved circulation to the lower extremities. Inverted poses also relieve pressure to the lower extremities. Yoga is also relaxing, which may present the varicosities from worsening. Specific poses that are beneficial to treating varicose veins include the shoulder stand, legs up the wall, leg lock pose, cycling pose, and boat pose.
What Types of Exercises are NOT Beneficial to Varicose Veins?
However, there are a number of types of exercise that may aggravate varicose veins. Running is high-impact and may make the condition worse. Running on softer surfaces such as grass or a synthetic track may allow the runner to keep up their routine while minimizing the aggravation to the varicosities. Wearing compression stockings while running may also help. Doing these things while running may minimize the stress on the joints and calves.
Weight lifting and certain bodyweight exercises, such as squats, lunges, sit-ups and crunches, may increase abdominal pressure, thus reducing the leg’s blood flow to the heart. Performing these types of exercises at a higher rep count versus heavier weights may be helpful. Exercising legs while they are at the same level of the heart promotes blood flow to the heart from the legs, which also decreases pressure exerted to the lower extremities.
Exercising to Prevent Varicose Veins
Exercising to prevent varicose veins is similar to exercising to treat varicose veins. Exercising controls weight and keeps leg muscles in shape. Low-impact exercises that don’t place extra strain on the legs are beneficial. Exercises that are performed either at or above the level of the heart promote blood flow. Wearing compression stockings while exercising strengthen the veins, thus preventing varicose veins. In addition, it is important to not hold the breath while performing weight training exercises. Holding the breath increases blood pressure. Increasing blood pressure can increases the chances of developing varicose veins. If weightlifting is part of the routine, inhale while lowering the weight and exhale while lifting the weight. Breathing correctly while exercising promotes adequate blood flow in the body, which decreases the blood pressure on the veins.
To prevent or treat varicose veins, developing a low-impact exercise routine is important. It can impact blood pressure, alleviate pain, and increase circulation.