Supporting those with musculoskeletal conditions to be active

Wednesday 17th June 11:05 - 11:45

Exercise has been described as a miracle cure. It has benefits for strength, skill, stamina, suppleness, and social connections. Musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions, such as arthritis and back pain, are the most common long-term conditions, affecting around 18 million people in the UK of all ages. Being more active is beneficial to people with MSK conditions in almost all cases, and people are likely to be encouraged to be more active by healthcare professionals.

The physical activity sector has the opportunity to help support improvement in the MSK health of the population and increase their customer base if they have the right offer. Many people with musculoskeletal conditions will experience pain when exercising. In most cases this does not mean that they should stop as there are long term benefits to appropriate exercise. It makes being active more challenging and means they need a safe and encouraging environment.

In this session we will cover:

• The different types of MSK conditions and how physical activity can help

• Understanding pain, how to support people in pain who want to be active, and why you should.

• How to create a comfortable environment for people who may struggle to be active and keep them coming back

• Some of the challenges for the fitness and wellness sector in welcoming people with MSK conditions and how these might be overcome.


Dr Benjamin Ellis, Senior Clinical Policy Advisor at Versus Arthritis

Rhian Horlock, Strategic Programme Manager, Physical Activity at Versus Arthritis