As a bodybuilder, joint pain is a fact of life. Pushing your body to the outermost limit takes its toll, not just on your muscles, but your bones, ligaments and cartilage as well. No matter how perfect the squat or how steady your dumbbell press, strains and sprains do happen; and that’s if you are in good solid shape. As we age, joint pain becomes ever more prevalent. The onset of arthritis, bursitis, tendinitis and any other joint-itis you can think of seems to plague the aging bodybuilder. And if you are one of those, not-so-natural bodybuilders, you may even experience joint pain from steroid withdrawal. Whether it is a lower back ache, knee joint pain, aching shoulders, or hip and leg pain our bodies are constantly reminding us, we are still human; not the gods and goddesses we so strive to become through ripped muscle and shapely buns.

The good news is there are a variety of joint pain remedies to choose from. There are countless over the counter medications that contain ibuprofen, including Advil, Motrin and Nuprin. Ibuprofen is an anti-inflammatory to help ease the pain of arthritis and other chronic joint pain issues. Tylenol, which contains acetaminophen even has a joint pain formula called Tylenol Arthritis. There are also several prescription joint pain remedies you may wish to discuss with your doctor. These non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAID’s are usually part of a pain management regimen outlined by your doctor to help reduce pain and improve your joint function.

While all of these medications can be effective remedies, many people, especially bodybuilders, often choose to go with more natural joint pain relief. Glucosamine, a compound of glucose and L-Glutamine occurs naturally and is an integral part of connective tissue like tendons, cartilage and ligaments. Glucosamine helps the body heal damaged connective tissue and provides relief from the symptoms of osteoarthritis, a condition that causes cartilage degeneration in the hips, knees and elbows over time.

Often, you will find Glucosamine paired with Chondroitin and MSM. Chondroitin also occurs naturally in the body and is a major component of the connective tissue that cushions the joints. Chondroitin helps by absorbing fluid into the tissue and blocking enzymes that cause the cartilage to break down. These actions aid in the reduction of swelling and stiffness in the joints. MSM, a naturally occurring source of sulfur and a vital component of joints and cartilage, has anti-inflammatory effects on the joints also helping to alleviate the symptoms of joint pain.

Glucosamine, Chondroitin and MSM are all found in supplement form, usually in a capsule or liquid. Recommended dosing includes 300-500mg of Glucosamine, 2-3 times daily, 400mg of Chondroitin 3 times daily and 1500mg per day of MSM. Most combination formulas will pre-dose the correct ratios so it is not necessary to take a separate supplement for each component.

For most bodybuilders, sculpting the perfect physique is not just a hobby but an outright addiction. Joint pain can hinder progress and sometimes have crippling effects. Pain management and supplementation will go a long way in reducing that pain to keep you hitting the weights and looking your absolute best. Train hard or go home.

Author's Bio: 

Jim Riggs
Fitness and Nutrition Expert
Industry Expert
Fitness Coach and Personal Trainer

Jim Riggs is an authority in the fitness, nutrition and supplement industries. With more than twenty years of experience training everyone from soccer moms, to NFL Athletes, to Olympic gold medalists he has seen it all. Jim has a unique understanding, style and passion toward everything fitness. As a contributing writer for Jim brings this uniqueness to the supplement world through no nonsense product review and hard hitting commentary.