strength training and (wrist) arthritis

Discussion in 'Masters (50+ years old)' started by somanaut, Dec 19, 2017.

  1. somanaut

    somanaut More than 300 posts

    Before I hit google, does anyone have any knowledge/experience with the effects of strength training on people/patients/clients with arthritis? I have read parts of articles that seem to suggest a positive effect. My dad has arthritis and it's mostly affecting his left wrist joint. I am not asking for specific medical advice, just to hear if anyone have any info/links, that they want to share. I was myself thinking of seeing if he can support something in the wrist rather than gripping it, like static holds (TGU etc.).

    EDIT: Perhaps I should have posted in other, how can I move a thread?
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2017
    Carl in Dover likes this.
  2. North Coast Miller

    North Coast Miller More than 2500 posts

    It is going to depend on where the arthritis is and what movements are effected. In general, hangs and holds will be better tolerated than pressing or twisting movements.

    In my experience it is unlikely to have a positive effect beyond strengthening the surrounding musculature, which could be a big help if the exercises themselves don't aggravate the issue.

    I'm not speaking as a physio but as someone who developed severe osteoarthritis in the wrists. There are going to be some variables that will effect what types of lifting can be done, but anything that can be tolerated is liable to be beneficial.

    Depending on the nature of the arthritis and severity there might be surgical options that have a pretty good record of success.
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  3. somanaut

    somanaut More than 300 posts

    Basically, if there is any evidence of positive effect of strength training some some kinds of arthritis, I want to find a physio that does strength training for old people with said condition, and point my dad towards him/her.
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  4. Tarzan

    Tarzan More than 500 posts

    Was it you who mentioned something about having a wrist/scaphoid fusion on here one time ?

    I seem to remember it was successful and got you back on track.

    I was looking at a scaphoid fusion myself and I'd even booked in to see a surgeon last year. I was also sold on the idea of TKR as I was getting to the stage where I couldn't bear weight on my dodgy knee.

    Then I stumbled across an article about using borax for arthritis. I was really skeptical at first as it sounded too good to be true. I looked into it and I found out borax has an LD50 score lower than common table salt, so I thought it couldn't hurt try it.

    After about 3 weeks I noticed my fingers no longer hurt and I've broken pretty well all of them at some stage, then my scaphoid problems eased and stopped causing me trouble and after about two months I started noticing a tangible improvement in my knee. I never got the scaphoid fusion as I just don't think I need it now and I'm back doing all the stuff my doctors said I'd never be able to do with my knee and it's pain free. All the ligaments are torn and a a few hamstring tendons are severed as well, so it's still unstable but pain free.

    It also increases testosterone levels which was in itself enough for me to take it. I'm approaching the big 50 so any natural boost there is more than welcome.

    I'm not suggesting it will do the same for @somanaut 's Father but it I'm certain it helped me.

    I just dip a wet fingertip into the tub of borax and dissolve it my coffee 3 times a day.
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  5. StanStan

    StanStan Triple-Digit Post Count

    !!! A lower LD50 indicates greater toxicity !!!

    That said, at LD50 2.66g/kg borax is not acutely toxic.

    Edit: spelling
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  6. StanStan

    StanStan Triple-Digit Post Count

    Mmmmh... It looks like borax may have adverse effects. See the ECHA website (Borax (B4Na2O7.10H2O) - Substance Information - ECHA)
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  7. Shawn90

    Shawn90 More than 500 posts

    Less salt = less arthritis ???

    more info on borax pls.
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  8. Tarzan

    Tarzan More than 500 posts

    Yeah I got that backwards it has a higher LD50, maybe I shouldn't post when I've been drinking. It has an LD50 1.5 to 2 times that of NaCl. I meant to say it has lower toxicity than NaCl .

    & it's not advisable for infants or pregnant mothers.
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2017
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  9. North Coast Miller

    North Coast Miller More than 2500 posts

    Yep, that was me. When the Doc performed scaphoid shift test you could hear the bone grinding across the room, there was no cartilage left. He actually called in all the interns that were available to sit down and perform the test on me.

    Exact quote "You could do 200 of these and not have a response that presents this clearly."

    I have two older sisters with wrist problems as well, one had the fusion and the other had proximal row carpectomy. Both are doing well, but for sure I wouldn't approach either lightly, especially the fusion - it is a beast of a surgery and the recovery is challenging.

    That said I'd do it again in a heartbeat if I had to. I went from being unable to pour a full gallon of milk to a PR bent press of 105 lbs.
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  10. Tarzan

    Tarzan More than 500 posts

    I haven't looked into the implications of salt for arthritis for many years but most of the stuff I read involved the displacement of potassium by excess sodium.I could be way off the mark there though it was a long time ago. I tried eliminating all added salt from my diet for almost twelve months but it didn't help at all.

    Borax is a source of boron and the theory is that calcium metabolism is regulated by serum levels of boron. It's thought by Dr Rex Newnham who came up with the theory that inadequate levels of the boron in modern diets disrupts calcium metabolism at a cellular level. Investigations around the world have found correlations with increased rates of arthritis in districts and countries with a low intake of boron.

    Correlation doesn't automatically equal causation though but there does seem to be a connection on some level.

    On the topic of calcium metabolism, Dr Melvin page found that sugar disrupts calcium metabolism and has a strong correlation with tooth decay. He wondered why some people get tooth caries and other seem almost immune. So he took blood tests from thousands of patients and found that people who have an imbalance in their calcium to phosphorus ratios invariably have tooth decay. Many of those people had high intakes of sugar in their diets. He also found that ingesting small amounts of sugar disrupts thyroid & parathyroid function and causes that calcium to phosphorus ratio to drift outside of the range he found to be optimal by raising serum calcium levels.

    On face value increased serum calcium levels seems like a good thing but he found that the opposite was true, the increased serum calcium was being drawn out of bones and teeth and contributing to tooth decay and oesteo arthritic conditions.
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2017
    Shawn90 likes this.
  11. Shawn90

    Shawn90 More than 500 posts

    When i google boron i get directed to an internet shop for supplements.

    safe to asume we get boron from eating vegetables ?
  12. Steve Freides

    Steve Freides Forum Administrator Senior Certified Instructor

    @somanaut, I moved this thread to the Masters (50+) section since it concerns aging.

    Strength can fix some things - many things, even. Your idea of a static hold with a kettlebell sounds worth trying, IMHO. Knuckle pushups are another thing to try - things that challenge the wrist to stay straight in the face of forces trying to bend it. Speaking from my own experience, I've found that even imagining doing things like holding a kettlebell or making the fist for a knuckle pushup can cause my own wrist pain to lessen almost immediately.

    One other thing worth considering - have him try sleeping with a wrist brace. Some people cause themselves wrist problems by how they hold their wrists when they sleep. I'm one of these. It doesn't happen to me often, but when it does, I sleep with a wrist brace for 2 or 3 days and my wrist pains goes away completely.

    As others have said, nothing in this thread is intended to be medical advice and everything should be cleared by a doctor before trying.

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  13. Tarzan

    Tarzan More than 500 posts

    A lot of the information about boron is hard to find on the web these days, it's still there but you just have to dig a bit to find it.

    Some of the papers I've referenced on other forums from pubmed in the past aren't there anymore, I could only speculate why that's the case.

    I hate linking to sites like this but the info is still available on here
    Rex Newnham -- Borax vs Arthritis -- articles & patent
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  14. LukeV

    LukeV More than 300 posts

    'Arthritis' is a generic term for what can be some very different things. I have quite extensive arthritis (rheumatoid) in hands, feet, shoulders etc and Mercola's RA Protocol has been akin to a miracle cure. This is dietary combined with daily krill, astaxanthan and curcumin supplements. Protocol easily available via Google.

    Weight training has also been very beneficial for me. But I pay scrupulous attention to programming and form, err on the side of caution with rest days (eg if program has two rest days per then I have three, at the moment I am doing Justa Singles #1 but rest for a day or two after each seven day cycle) and avoid weights above 90% RM (almost always lifting 80% or below). Changes in routine can take some adjusting too, particularly increases in volume or frequency, and I get a bit sore for a week or so but once I'm acclimatised I always feel better for the exercise.
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2017
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  15. somanaut

    somanaut More than 300 posts

    Thanks for moving the thread Steve. I have found an arthritis association with and education and training branch, will have him contact those and see how it goes. His doctor basically told him, that it's some kind of arthritis and that it's just a part of getting old. I would like him to pressure his doctor a bit more, he is from the generation where you don't ask your doctor too many questions.

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