Participating in regular movement and exercise can improve the body's strength, flexibility and endurance. 

There may be times when it is necessary to lower your activity level due to illness or to recover from an acute, painful injury. However, this is not typically recommended for managing chronic pain. Repeated use of rest and avoidance of movement to temporarily reduce pain can lead to a decrease in strength, flexibility and endurance, and an increase in disability.  

Although initial increases in movement and exercise can result in muscle soreness, this can be managed by finding the most appropriate activity and using a gradual approach. If you are uncertain about how to increase your activity level or what exercises or activities are appropriate for you, please discuss this with your health-care provider.

Suggestions to improve exercise and movement

Motivation plays a large role in whether we follow through with our plans to pursue an activity. Therefore, be sure to let your health-care provider know what activities you most enjoy or are most likely to do.  If you worry that any discomfort you might experience in response to increased activity means further harm is occurring, please let your health-care provider know your concerns.

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