If you’ve got varicose veins, you may find that your legs feel worse during the lockdown. Indeed, even if you can’t see the varicose veins, thousands of people have “hidden varicose veins”. Reduced exercise worsens varicose veins and “hidden varicose veins”. This can cause more aching, tired legs, throbbing or even ankle swelling.
This might make you want to reduce or stop exercising.
However, cutting exercise out of your life is something you don’t want to do, especially during lockdown. Incorporating some form of exercise into your daily life is crucial to not only your vein health but also your heart health and your entire body’s health.
Any activity that keeps your legs moving is beneficial for your veins. Walking is the simplest way to achieve this goal. If you live in an area where going for a walk is safe to do so and abides by all social distancing and COVID-19 regulations, take a nice stroll daily.
When you’re not outdoors, try walking around your house. Do a lap or two through every room before completing any of your daily tasks. Walking up and down stairs – or even just up on to one step and back off it repetitively – is great for the flow of blood in your leg veins.
If you are lucky enough to have a garden or balcony, you have the option of exercising outdoors!
Sunshine does the body good; set up on the lawn and do your daily leg exercises, like squats and lunges if you can – or tiptoes and walking on the spot if you can’t. During this uncertainty phase of lockdown, the change of scenery and fresh air will also do your mind good.
Whether you have the chance to sit outdoors or have your regular seat indoors, try to keep your legs up! This is especially important if you are going to get through a film or two – or binge watch the box set you have been meaning to see!
Leg elevation helps blood travel back to the heart and gives your veins a break, so be sure to put your feet up!
While you’re sitting or standing, rock your feet back and forth from heel to toe. This can be done at any time and is also helpful if health conditions prevent you from trying other forms of exercise.
Moving your ankle joint is one of the best ways to keep your “leg pump” working, to keep the veins flowing back to your heart. It also reduces the risks of phlebitis and other complications from varicose veins and “hidden varicose veins”.
Whilst we are all doing our part at staying at home, dancing around the house is certainly still very much allowed! In general, as dancing is a coordinated form of walking, then any dancing steps will give the advantages of coordinated venous pumping that we see with walking. The fact that dancing is performed at a faster rate than walking in the majority of cases, improves the pumping of the venous blood during a dance over and above that that would be found during walking.
There are some great dance classes online!