Exercises to Reduce Varicose Veins

Varicose veins are gnarled, enlarged veins that are most often found in legs and feet. Although varicose veins and their slighter cousins, spider veins, are a cosmetic concern for most people, the enlarged veins can cause others physical pain. Varicose veins might also be an indicator of more serious circulatory issues, so it's vital to get them checked by a doctor before engaging in self-treatment.


Put Your Feet Up

Getting off your feet and raising your feet when you sit or sleep will help reduce the pressure on your veins. Performing an exercise that puts your legs high in the air, such as the yoga Legs Up The Wall or Shoulderstand can additionally reduce vein stress by toning thighs and ameliorating blood through in the entire leg. Remain with your legs elevated for as long as is comfortable.

Get Moving

Soho Vein and Vascular recommends walking to increase overall fitness and to get your legs moving. Adding tip-toe and heel walking challenges your legs, improves circulation and works your calves. Other low impact exercises, such as swimming and cycling, can be incorporated to improve your overall health and fitness, reducing the stress on your veins. Even short bursts of exercise, like walking around the block, can greatly improve the symptoms of varicose veins.


Standing on a step or ledge with both feet so that your heels extend over the edge, raise yourself up on your toes and lower your heels down below the step. Make sure you are within reach of support to balance if necessary. Repeat 30 to 50 times once or twice a day. This exercise elongates and strengths the calf muscle and increases blood flow to the muscle, which improves vein quality.

Knee Bends and Ankle Flex

While lying on your back, bring one leg into your chest and hold the back of your knee. Slowly rotate your ankle in one direction, then switch. Repeat with opposite leg. Be mindful to not let your legs or ankles flop, as it will reduce the effectiveness of this whole leg exercise. Since you elevate your legs and work your muscles, this exercise takes pressure off veins and improves tone. Perform this exercise once a day.


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This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.