The 5-Minute Workout for Healthy Joints

5 minute workout for healthy joints exercise illustration
Doing just five minutes of gentle exercise per day can help keep your joints strong and mobile.
Image Credit: FG Trade/E+/GettyImages

Most people tend to focus only on building strength and creating muscle definition when working out, but it's important to prioritize your joints, too. After all, your joints are the support system behind your muscles; you aren't able to move your muscles at a full range of motion if your joint mobility is off.

Having healthy joints also contributes to living pain- and injury-free as you age. That's because movement increases your joint strength, so they are more resilient when absorbing impact. When you don't exercise or do any physical activity, your joints actually degenerate. Plus, the more you strengthen your muscles, the more functional your joints will be.

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To help you keep your joints strong, try this 5-minute workout. Do each move for the prescribed number of reps or time once through.

Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com

Move 1: Inchworm

Time 40 Sec
Activity Body-Weight Workout
Body Part [ "Abs", "Arms", "Shoulders", "Legs" ]
  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart.
  2. Hinge your torso forward at the hips so your hands touch the ground.
  3. Keeping your legs straight, walk your hands forward until you are in a high plank position, stacking your shoulders above your wrists.
  4. Hold the plank for 2 seconds, then walk your hands back to your feet while keeping your legs straight.
  5. Stand back up to the starting position.

Tip

If you have limited flexibility, you can bend your knees.

Move 2: Half Squat

JW Player placeholder image
Time 40 Sec
Activity Body-Weight Workout
Body Part [ "Legs", "Butt" ]
  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart.
  2. Bend your knees and push your butt back, lowering your body a few inches.
  3. Drive through your heels to stand back up and squeeze your glutes at the top.

Move 3: Clamshell

Skill Level Beginner
Reps 10
Activity Body-Weight Workout
Body Part [ "Butt", "Legs" ]
  1. Lie on your side with knees bent and your hips stacked. Rest your head on your bottom arm and place your other arm in front of you for balance.
  2. Keeping your heels together, rotate your top knee open until you feel the tension in your side glute.
  3. Lower your knee back down to the starting position.
  4. Do 10 reps and repeat on the other side.

Move 4: Calf Raise

Skill Level Beginner
Time 40 Sec
Activity Body-Weight Workout
Body Part Legs
  1. Stand with your feet together.
  2. Lift your heels off the ground and come up onto your toes.
  3. Pause here for a second, then bring your heels back down to the ground.

Tip

For balance support, hold on to a steady object, like a chair or the wall.

Move 5: Supine Twist

JW Player placeholder image
Skill Level Beginner
Reps 6
Activity Body-Weight Workout
Body Part [ "Shoulders", "Back", "Chest" ]
  1. Lie on your side with knees bent and your hips stacked. Place both arms out in front of you, palm to palm.
  2. Keeping your arms straight, rotate your top arm open, and let it fall behind you as far as you can comfortably go. Make sure you are following along with your head. You should feel the stretch in your shoulders, back and chest.
  3. Hold here for 2 seconds.
  4. Bring your top arm back to the starting position.

Tip

Keeping your hips stacked allows you to hone the stretch in your upper body.

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