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Try These Exercises for Restless Legs

Start with a moderate workout.

Many people with restless legs syndrome (RLS) find that regular, moderate exercise helps relieve symptoms. Think walking, cycling, and swimming. But while some exercise is good, more isn’t better. An overly vigorous workout may make RLS worse.

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Medically Reviewed By: William C. Lloyd III, MD, FACS | Last Review Date:

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Medical References

  1. Restless Leg Syndrome. A.D.A.M. (accredited by the American Accreditation HealthCare Commission). October 12, 2009. http://health.nytimes.com/health/guides/disease/restless-leg-syndrome/treatment.html
  2. Water Exercise. Arthritis Foundation. 2011. http://www.arthritis.org/water-exercise.php
  3. Physical Activity for Everyone: How Much Physical Activity Do Adults Need? Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. March 30, 2011. http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/guidelines/adults.html
  4. Restless Legs Syndrome: What Is Restless Legs Syndrome? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. November 2010. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/Diseases/rls/rls_All.html
  5. Chapter 4, Sample Exercises: Stretching Exercises. National Institute on Aging. January 31, 2008. http://www.nia.nih.gov/HealthInformation/Publications/ExerciseGuide/chapter04c.htm
  6. Restless Legs Syndrome: ‘Creepy-Crawly’ Legs Causing Distress? Harvard Medical School. http://www.patientedu.org/userdocs/brochure/PMPEC-RLS-01.pdf
  7. Can’t Sleep? What to Know About Insomnia. National Sleep Foundation. 2011. http://www.sleepfoundation.org/article/sleep-related-problems/insomnia-and-sleep
  8. Diet, Exercise and Sleep, National Sleep Foundation. December 2009. http://www.sleepfoundation.org/article/sleep-topics/diet-exercise-and-sleep
  9. Lifestyle Changes and Activities. Worldwide Education and Awareness for Movement Disorders. January 14, 2011. http://www.wemove.org/rls/rls_lca.html
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