It’s still possible to exercise when you have hemorrhoids—you just have to make sure you do the appropriate exercises and in the right way!
As more and more people have come to realize, hemorrhoids are often attributed to being caused by a low-fibre diet and an overly sedentary lifestyle. Such a combination often leads to chronic constipation, one of the critical causes of the ailment.
Some estimates suggest that around 75% of adults, especially those over 60, suffer from hemorrhoids at a certain point.
However, it is well recognized that suitable exercise can help prevent hemorrhoids in the first place and alleviate the discomfort and pain associated with them. Indeed, there is no reason to avoid exercise because of hemorrhoids, unless it is particularly uncomfortable. If an activity doesn’t feel right, choose a different exercise!
But first, before we look at some great exercises for hemorrhoids, what exactly are hemorrhoids?
Hemorrhoids (often known as “piles”) occur when veins in the rectum and anus become swollen and inflamed. Hemorrhoids can happen for a variety of reasons, such as straining to force a bowel movement, lifting overly heavy objects on a regular basis, sitting on the toilet with your bowel open for a long time or as a side-effect of being pregnant.
How does exercise help hemorrhoids?
Exercise, whether or not you have hemorrhoids, has a positive effect on many of our body systems, including keeping digestive systems functioning well. Clearly, therefore, an active lifestyle can go a long way in the prevention of hemorrhoids.
Exercise can keep your system “regular,” but also, importantly, can help prevent constipation and reduce pressure on the veins around the anus, which can result from long periods of relative inactivity, such as sitting and standing. In addition, regular exercise can also help you keep fit and lose excess weight, which is a contributing cause of hemorrhoids.
Appropriate exercise can also promote colon health and may even help prevent some serious gastrointestinal diseases.
Other positive health effects of exercising with hemorrhoids include:
- strengthening muscles, increasing flexibility, and improving balance
- reducing body weight and reversing obesity
- mental health benefits
- preventing or controlling hypertension and diabetes
- maintaining healthy joints and bones to prevent injuries
- reducing the risk of stroke or heart disease
Getting ready to exercise with hemorrhoids
Even though exercising with hemorrhoids is a positive step, it’s still important to pay close attention to the actual condition of your body and your particular circumstances.
Your body will tell you what you can and cannot do, and it’s prudent to start slowly and gradually build up an exercise regimen (unless, of course, you are a regular exerciser).
Make sure you stay hydrated and follow a good diet
An ample intake of water is crucial for preventing constipation, which can then lead to hemorrhoids or can worsen existing symptoms.
The diet you follow is also key in keeping your body in its best shape, and eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables can also work to prevent constipation. In all cases, maintain a healthy diet and exercise routine that fits your symptoms and fitness goals.
Try to avoid those particular activities or exercises which cause pain or excess pain. Some people with hemorrhoids struggle with sitting activities, such as spinning and rowing, as they increase pressure on the anal area, but there are other options to follow for burning calories and building muscle.
Activities which will strain back and abdomen muscles, such as weightlifting, should be avoided as the induced tension can cause hemorrhoids to swell. Squats, too, can also cause problems relating to hemorrhoids.
Personalize an exercise programme
The type, duration and intensity of exercise you will be able to do when you have hemorrhoids will vary depending on a number of factors, such as your age, overall health and current activity level.
Before starting a new exercise regime, it’s wise to discuss your exercise goals and abilities with a doctor and then self-tailor a programme or work out one with a fitness trainer.
Try to pick exercises you enjoy, such as walking and/or swimming which are both good cardiovascular options and which you can do whether you have hemorrhoids or not. Another option is to join a group to obtain encouragement from each other.
Best exercises with hemorrhoids
The list of benefits which exercise brings is endless, but it’s important to maintain the right balance and not undertake overly-strenuous activities that can actually worsen your hemorrhoids.
The overall goal is to encourage regular bowel movements, improve circulation, and strengthen muscles in the pelvic area and lower back. Increased blood flow, in particular, boosts the delivery of beneficial nutrients and oxygen to the affected area and, therefore, exercises which are generally considered effective for hemorrhoid management and prevention include:
- walking and other similar cardiovascular exercises;
- yoga and other controlled-movement exercises which help strengthen abdominal and rectal tissues;
- exercise focussed on the sphincter muscles;
- water-based exercises such as swimming and water aerobics;
- treadmill exercises;
- Kegels and similar pelvic floor exercises
Some exercises to avoid hemorrhoids
Generally strenuous or high-impact exercises and exercises which put a lot of pressure on the abdominal and anal area should be avoided. These include heavy weightlifting (small weights are usually okay), cycling, horseback riding, sit-ups, and squats.
Certain exercise machines, such as the rowing machine, may cause added discomfort.
NA Hemorrhoids Clinic can help
Research has proven that the food and beverages you consume can greatly impact your health, and what you eat and drink directly influences the types of stools you produce.
Maintaining a balanced diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables, drinking plenty of water and, importantly, doing appropriate exercises can help prevent hemorrhoids.
Self-help in the treatment of hemorrhoids is to be commended, but in any event, it’s always wise to seek specialist advice. NA Hemorrhoids Clinic, which has been in business for over 15 years, and is a specialist in treating hemorrhoids, can help relieve the discomfort and distress that the condition can bring.
Amongst other things, the Clinic uses widely acclaimed traditional Chinese medicine methods, including a herbal ointment called “Ba Zhi San.” This is combined with modern and other naturopathic methods to treat hemorrhoids effectively.
So, why not contact us now and let us help you to prevent hemorrhoids or get over the problems associated with them?