While getting your heart pumping is great for improving vein health, certain high-intensity exercises can be dangerous for people with varicose veins.
At times, it may seem like there’s no relief for the itchiness, achiness, and tenderness of your varicose veins — but that’s not the case. Varicose veins are caused by underactive valves, which make it difficult for blood traveling through your veins to move through it has entered. When your valves don’t work as intended, blood can pool in your veins like a stopped-up hose, leading to varicose veins.
But because exercise gets your heart pumping and improves blood circulation, it can encourage blood to travel through your veins and help push blood through your valves. As a result, exercise can provide relief from the bothersome symptoms of your varicose veins. However, before you hit the gym, make sure you know which exercises are safe — some exercises can place strain on your varicose veins and make them even worse.
The best types of exercise for varicose veins are slow, aerobic activities to get your blood pumping without too much intensity. With a regular exercise schedule of thirty minutes per day, you can improve your blood flow from your legs back to your heart and strengthen your vascular system. As an added benefit, exercise can help you lose any excess weight that might be contributing to varicose vein growth.
Exercises That Can Relieve Varicose Vein Discomfort
Enjoying your exercise routine is vital to maintaining it, and regularity is key to enjoying varicose vein symptom relief. All of these exercises can be great for patients with varicose veins — try them all out to figure out what works best for you:
Walking. Going on regular, brisk walks can be a refreshing way to improve circulation and maintain a healthy weight. Walking is a very low-risk exercise that most people can do. When you go on a walk, you stretch out and strengthen your leg muscles, which helps to improve circulation through your leg veins, especially if you don’t get enough activity in your daily life.
Swimming. Swimming is a particularly great activity for overall vein health for people who have trouble walking, though anyone can enjoy its benefits. Any aerobic activity like swimming can improve circulation and encourage blood flow through your legs, arms, and other areas of discomfort.
Cycling. Like other aerobic exercises, cycling helps to strengthen your leg and calf muscles and improve blood flow through your veins back to your heart. You don’t need to own a bicycle to benefit from cycling — stationary bikes, as well as cycling exercises you can do while lying on your back, can offer the same benefits as outdoor cycling.
Leg raises. Stretching and strengthening your leg muscles can happen in your own living room. There are several types of leg raises you can do to improve your vein health. Learn the best ways to safely do leg raises while lying on your back, while standing, and while balancing against a chair.
Exercises That Can Harm
To avoid potential damage to your varicose veins, make sure to avoid exercises that put too much pressure on your veins and muscles. Exercises like running, weightlifting, and intensive calisthenics (including push-ups, pull-ups, or difficult yoga poses) can put unnecessary strain on your vascular system and potentially damage your valves even more.
Treating your Varicose veins
The right physical activities can improve your vein health and reduce the negative symptoms of varicose veins. But exercise will not eliminate your varicose veins completely. If you are looking for a long-term solution to bothersome varicose veins, talk to a vein specialist for clinical treatment. For a varicose vein solution in Las Vegas, schedule an appointment with our doctors at Desert Vein Institute.
At Desert Vein, we offer innovative solutions like VenaSeal™️ and ClosureFast™️, plus more traditional sclerotherapy and phlebectomy procedures. Our clinical vein treatments can be nearly pain-free, and they can eliminate your pesky varicose veins once and for all. When exercise isn’t enough, vein therapy can be a lasting solution.