From stretching and walking to swimming and yoga, there are many low-impact ways to exercise and get relief from chronic pain. Not only does regular exercise keep your muscles strong, those strong muscles can then serve to support your entire body. This is especially important for those with pain associated with arthritis or back pain, as strong muscles support joints and boost movement. 

Check out these top low-impact exercises you can try if you suffer from chronic pain:


It may seem quite simple, but walking is really the best exercise for your health and for pain reduction. For those with joint pain, it’s better than running, which puts a lot of stress and strain on your knees and other joints. With walking, you can choose your pace based on your mood or preferences – slow and at a leisurely pace or brisk for added cardiovascular benefits.

Swimming or Water Aerobics

Water is a great environment in which to engage with low-impact cardio exercise due to the minimal impact on your joints. For some, swimming laps is a great workout, while for others it’s too strenuous. In that case, water aerobics would be a nice alternative to become accustomed to the water and eventually doing laps. Plus, you can use floating equipment for natural, gentle resistance. 


Yoga combines core strengthening and meditation exercises that can bring a whole host of health benefits. Performed in a relaxed and calm setting, yoga offers plenty of poses and stretching exercises at a variety of difficulty levels to accommodate all participants. Use yoga to stay in shape and boost your emotional health without aggravating your chronic pain or pre-existing injuries. The meditative act of participating in yoga can reduce stress and provide whole-body relaxation.

Elliptical Machine

Designed to mimic running motions without the stress on joints, using an elliptical machine boosts your cardiovascular health without worsening your chronic joint pain. 

Recumbent Exercise Bikes

Designed with more comfortable positioning than a traditional bike, a recumbent bike encourages a reclined posture that reduces stress on the neck and lower back.

Benefits of Regular Low-Impact Exercise

Physical activity brings many physical health benefits. It can help you manage weight, reduce risk of disease, boost your heart health, and strengthen muscles and bones. But exercise boosts brain health too. According to the CDC, physical activity helps you learn, think, and problem-solve, improves memory, reduces anxiety or depression, and reduces your risk of cognitive decline, including Alzheimer’s and dementia.

This is good news for those living with chronic pain, as this group is more at risk of mental health challenges. Staying physically active with low-impact exercises can release endorphins — natural chemicals your body releases to fight off pain and increase happiness and comfort. Staying active can help you achieve and maintain a healthy weight, vital for those with chronic pain. That’s because excess weight results in increased stress on the back and other joints, particularly the ankles and knees, which in turns exacerbates pain. 

You can work with a physical therapist or experienced pain management physicians at a pain wellness center to ensure you can safely and comfortably start a low-impact exercise routine.

Do You Suffer From Chronic Pain? Contact Summit Spine & Joint Centers Today!

A pain-free life is within reach when you partner with the pain management specialists at Summit Spine and Joint Centers. We can help create an exercise program to benefit your overall health and reduce your pain. We pride ourselves on our experience and expertise in Interventional Pain Management. Book your consultation today at 770-962-3642.