Living your best life with arthritis.

AS it Goes – Massage is Not Therapy

Woman enjoying massage

Image courtesy of Ambro /

Many people with arthritis use massage therapy to help alleviate their aches and pains. Massage soothes sore joints and muscles and over the long term, it may improve your range of motion, reduce stiffness and lessen the anxiety associated with living with chronic pain.

When you have ankylosing spondylitis (AS), it’s important to know—in advance—what kind of massage would suit you the best. If you are in remission, for instance, the massage can be a little more aggressive with more pressure applied to muscles. In general, it is advised that AS’ers should ask for a soft tissue massage with light kneading, vibration, and some stretching and long soothing strokes. Continue reading

#Goals4Arthritis – Goal 30: Channelling Astrud

#Goals4Arthritis – Goal 30: Channelling Astrud

The day before the finals will see fans at the FIFA World Cup in Brazil enjoying the atmosphere to its fullest. Many fans will flock to Ipanema – a fashionable seaside neighbourhood located in the southern region of Rio de Janeiro.

#Goals4Arthritis BannerYou too can get into the mood by playing some Bossa Nova today in the summer sun and, if you are really feeling the Brazilian World Cup vibe, perform a karaoke version of one of Brazil’s most famous songs: The Girl from Ipanema. To help inspire you musically (the hairstyle and clothes may inspire as well), here is the original from Astrud Gilberto and Stan Getz.

And to help you rehearse, here are the lyrics:

Tall and tan and young and lovely 
The girl from Ipanema goes walking
And when she passes, each one she passes
Goes “A-a-a-h”
When she walks she’s like a samba
When she walks, she’s like a samba
That swings so cool and sways so gentle
That when she passes, each one she passes
Goes “A-a-a-h”
Oh, but I watch her so sadly
How can I tell her I love her
Yes, I would give my heart gladly
But each day as she walks to the sea
She looks straight ahead, not at me
Tall and tan and young and lovely
The girl from Ipanema goes walking
And when she passes, I smile, but she
Doesn’t see. She just doesn’t see
No, she just doesn’t

#Goals4Arthritis – Goal 29: Brazzzzzil

#Goals4Arthritis – Goal 29: Brazzzzzil

In preparation for the FIFA World Cup™ in Brazil, USA Today reported on the steps the United States Men’s National Soccer team were taking to ensure their players were optimizing their recovery and rest time:

“Since the start of training camp last month, the players have been wearing wristbands that detect their sleep and wake periods, and characterize the quantity and quality of their sleep. That data are analyzed and applied practically.

If a player is struggling during training, was it because he woke up several times during the night? Or was it because he slept with his iPhone or TV on or used his laptop shortly before bed?

“It’s an interesting concept,” the team’s fitness director, Masa Sakihana, told USA TODAY Sports on Thursday. “Sleep can affect your reaction time and your performance.”

#Goals4Arthritis BannerSleep not only can affect an athlete’s reaction time and their performance, it can also affect the life of someone living with arthritis. For many people living with arthritis, “I’m so tired” is a common phrase – 80-100% of people living with certain types of inflammatory arthritis live with fatigue. Today’s #Goals4Arthritis is to combat fatigue and sleep for at least 8 hours.

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#Goals4Arthritis – Goal 28: PED: Performance enhancing diet

#Goals4Arthritis – Goal 28: PED: Performance enhancing diet

Along with intense, high performance training and exercise, today’s players in the FIFA World Cup follow rigorous nutrition and diet regimes to maximize their performance. The coaching staff of the World Cup teams, with the guidance and direction of dieticians and nutritionists, provide their players carefully planned meals and snacks.

#Goals4Arthritis BannerMaintaining a good diet is also good for your joint  health. #Goals4Arthritis wants you to enhance your performance by eating well today. Cooking at home is a good way to ensure you get the healthy ingredients your body requires and a positive way to be active and get your joints moving.

Though no dietary miracles have yet been discovered in the fight against arthritis, scientists have made a number of recent research advancements on the role of diet and nutrition in arthritis treatment. Today, we understand much more about the connections between arthritis, diet, healthy bodyweight, immune function, and inflammation. We are learning more and more about the positive steps each of us can take to fight arthritis and encourage overall health.

To help you understand what the research is telling us about arthritis and nutrition, click here for a discussion about what is proven effective, and what is not:

#Goals4Arthritis – Goal 27: Are you in the running for the World Cup?

#Goals4Arthritis – Goal 27: Are you in the running for the World Cup?

In the FIFA World Cup, players run approximately 70 per cent of the actual minutes of a game. The faster a soccer player can run, the greater his ability to beat defenders. Most of the runs made in soccer are explosive, high intensity runs, where sprinting, strength and jumping ability are extremely important.

Today’s #Goals4Arthritis is to take advantage of the weather and go out for a run.

#Goals4Arthritis Banner

Below are tips, courtesy of Runner’s World, for people living with arthritis who wants to continue running.

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AS it Goes – Sleep, Gentle Sleep

Clock that says "Time for bed!"

Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles at

”To sleep, perchance to Dream; Aye, there’s the rub”
Shakespeare’s Hamlet (Act 111, Scene 1)

This line is part of Hamlet’s famous soliloquy “To be, or not to be” and illustrates how Hamlet’s sleep was fraught with tortured dreams over the murder of his father and other heinous deeds. It appears that the universal preoccupation with getting a peaceful sleep was as much a common concern over 400 years ago as it is for people today. Continue reading