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Balancing rest and activity during a flare

Hi all,

I have nr-axspa and am currently in the throes of a 12 day and counting flare up. It’s been so tough, as I know everyone in this community knows, to manage the pain and figure out patterns across symptoms. But the question I’m specifically grappling with right now is how you all manage rest vs activity during flare ups.

One of the many difficulties of this disease is how symptoms generally improve with movement, which is why pain gets so bad at night and in the morning. When I’m not in a flare up, I’m borderline obsessive about getting 10k steps in daily and doing my physical therapy exercises to help stave off pain.

But when I’m in a flare up, I’m exhausted and sometimes struggle to even walk around my house. How do you all balance rest during a flare up when you know moving around might help to decrease the time of a flare up? On days where I let myself fully give into the fatigue and not move much, I usually experience a worsening of symptoms.

I’m really struggling to find out where the line of activity vs rest is during a flare up. Curious if you all could share tips that have worked for you — does doing PT help decrease flare up time if you can force yourself through it, etc?

Thank you in advance!

  1. - Checking in ... I hope you are doing better than you did at the end of 2023. Finding the right balance between rest and movement during flare-ups may require some trial and error, and it's okay to adjust your approach based on how your body responds. By listening to your body, pacing yourself, and incorporating gentle movement and self-care strategies, you can better manage flare-ups and minimize their impact on your daily life. Here's a link to an article that may help. Wishing you well. Rebecca (community moderator)

    1. , I tend to focus my energy into walking in water or doing gentle aerobics in the water. Water allows my very sore body parts to be exercised, yet not have the normal gravity weight stress on those joints. During a bad flare up, I try to gently continue to exercise, however I am not always successful in that.

      I do notice that if I do not exercise, I become much more sore. I even dislike weekends when I don't exercise enough.

      I am a big fan of PT, However, I would talk with the PT person about giving me exercises that will not exacerbate my painful areas.

      Good luck!

      1. LisaWY,
        It's great to hear water aerobics/water exercise has been so beneficial for you.
        Thanks so much for sharing your experience and helpful advice.
        Sending you all my best, Doreen (Team Member)

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