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Venus Williams wins silver despite battle with Sjögren’s syndrome

Tennis court with tennis ball in the foregroundVenus Williams, despite life with Sjögren’s syndrome, and teammate Rajeev Ram takes home the silver medal for mixed doubles in tennis in the Olympic games. Though Williams was denied the gold medal by fellow Americans Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Jack Sock, she will always be a hero to the arthritis community for her battle against Sjögren’s syndrome.

Sjögren’s syndrome is an inflammatory autoimmune disease (like arthritis) in which white blood cells—the body’s immune system—attack moisture-producing glands. Most often, this results in dry eyes and mouth, although it can also affect the joints and muscles, and organs including the liver, pancreas, kidneys, lungs, stomach, and brain. Continue reading

Swim for arthritis and cheer on Canada’s swim team at Rio 2016!

People with arthritis should celebrate the success of Canada’s swim team at Rio 2016 by going for a swim.

children swimmingThe Arthritis Research Centre of Canada reports that water provides an excellent medium for exercising. The buoyancy of your body in the water means less weight on the main weight- bearing joints (feet, ankles, knees, and hips) and allow for freer, less painful movement while still providing resistance to muscles. Swimming, combined with the water’s support provides an aerobic workout without putting extra stress on your joints. Similarly, walking through the water in a swimming pool protects joints and lessens possible pain, while providing a workout with 12 times the resistance of walking on land. Continue reading

Paralympian Leigh Walmsley: Bull’s eye on RA

Shadow of an archerBritish archer Leigh Walmsley competed at the London 2012 Paralympic game despite living with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Her target is clear: continue to manage her RA while participating in competitive archery locally and nationally.

Walmsley experienced symptoms of RA in her 20s. She recalled feeling progressively worsening stiffness and soreness over weeks and months, especially in the morning and evening. She did not receive a diagnosis until she was 30. Even now, 24 years later, she continues to experience fatigue from RA and admits that her RA is not as controlled as she’d like it to be.  Continue reading

Canoeing and kayaking can be beneficial for joints

Man in a kayakCanoeing and kayaking are good exercises for people with arthritis because they are low-impact sports that reduce wear-and-tear on joints and tissues.

After his diagnosis with arthritis, Nova Scotia resident Nick LeBlanc refused to give up on sports and participates in paddling sports like kayaking. Childhood arthritis affects three in 1,000 children in Canada. LeBlanc was playing in a tournament when a swollen knee eventually led a visit to the ER, where doctors referred him to a rheumatologist and he was diagnosed with arthritis.

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Wrist injury in table tennis can lead to wrist arthritis

Ping Pong racket and netInjury to wrist joints can lead to post traumatic wrist arthritis. According to the International Journal of Table Tennis Sciences, the most common areas of injury in table tennis players are the lower back, knee joint, wrist joint, shoulder joint, and ankle joint. These types of injuries can be avoided by keeping training sessions short and using the proper technique. Continue reading

From the Olympics to the ARThritis Soirée

Hristo demonstrating fencing with his studentWhat does one do after the Olympics? That is the question of the day for the Arthritis Olympic Village. For Bulgarian fencer Hristo Etropolski, it’s about establishing your own fencing club and participating in meaningful fundraiser galas such as the ARThritis Soirée.

The ARThritis Soirée is an annual fundraising gala to attract Vancouver’s most prominent business and community leaders, philanthropists, doctors, scientists, healthcare professionals, and donors through an appreciation of art and a desire to support arthritis research. Continue reading