Tag Archives: pain

How to Reduce Joint Pain Naturally

reduce joint pain naturally

After being diagnosed with an autoimmune disease that causes persistent inflammation and pain in my muscles, tendons, and ligaments, I’ve been on a quest to figure out how to reduce my pain and move better without the use of drugs.

One of the most impactful discoveries I’ve made has been a training protocol called Muscle Activation Techniques (MAT).

MAT was developed by strength coach and biomechanics specialist Greg Roskopf (who has worked with a long list of professional athletes, including Bryson DeChambeau, Peyton Manning, DeMarcus Ware, and Odell Beckham Jr. It’s designed to re-establish the communication pathways between the nervous system and the muscular system in order to restore muscle contractile capabilities.

The result: increased strength, flexibility, mobility, and coordination, lower risk of injury, and less pain.

I’ve put together a list of exercises that use MAT and several other techniques to address some of the most common sources of pain (neck, back, shoulders, elbows, wrists, knees, hips, etc.).

I do some combination of these every day. I recommend starting with 1 or 2 and seeing how you feel after doing them daily for a couple weeks. There’s also a link below if you’d like to find a MAT specialist.

No matter how old or young, fit or sedentary you are, moving is the key to looking and feeling younger.

I guarantee these exercises will help you do just that.

My 10 Favorite Exercises for Reducing Aches and Pains

Exercise #1: Wrist Warm-up 

Areas Targeted: (Wrists and Elbows).

Notes: any time I lift weights, I always warm up my wrists and elbows with this routine.

Exercise #2: Face Pulls 

Areas Targeted: Neck, Back, Shoulders, Chest

Note: Face pulls and this exercise are amazing for improving your posture.

Exercise #3: 4 Point Hip Adduction

Areas Targeted: Glutes & Hips

Exercise #4: Lateral Hamstring Raise

Areas Targeted: Hamstrings & Hips

Exercise #5: Arm Circles

Areas Targeted: Shoulders

Exercise #6: Back Warm-up Routine

Areas Targeted: Back

Exercise #7: Side Lying Windmill

Areas Targeted: Back and Shoulders

Exercise #8: QL Stretch

Areas Targeted: Hips, Back, and Shoulders

Exercise #9: Upper Back and Shoulder Warm-up

Areas Targeted: Hips, Back, and Shoulders

Note: Start with no weight … this is advanced!

Exercise #10: The Scorpion

Areas Targeted: Hips, Back, and Shoulders

Note: Master the other warm-up moves first, this one is advanced.

MAT Resources:

What Is Muscle Activation? (quick overview from Greg Roskopf)

Functional Movement Exercises with Greg Roskopf (a little longer description of how MAT works)

Muscle Activation Exercises for Glutes, Core, Brain, Hips, Chest & Beyond (good all around MAT workout)

MAT for Tight Hips and Glutes (scroll down to see the exercises)

To get a personalized plan for you, find a MAT specialist here.

My Top Supplements for Reducing Joint Pain

While NSAIDs are the OTC drug of choice for reducing pain, there are serious long-term effects from chronic use. For that reason, I try and avoid ingesting NSAIDs and other pain pills. I know some people need them in order to function daily.

But whenever possible, try using topical diclofenac gel (naproxen) because it’s a much safer option. I have found that combining a bit of topical naproxen gel with some CBD oil (tincture oil or rub) results in near-instant pain relief for my sore knees, back, elbows, and neck and helps me sleep better.

But, just because this has worked for me, doesn’t mean it’ll work for you, of course.

If you have chronic pain, first talk to your doctor. Find out the root cause of your pain, then you can work on treating it.

Once you’re comfortable enough to exercise, these movements will help you reduce some of those aches and pains over time by building and repairing muscles and connective tissue in those oft-neglected areas you need it most.

Stay limber, friends!