a man standing in pain from stiff joints

Post-Activity Stiffness and Psoriatic Arthritis

Please do not take this as the standard stiffness all of us with psoriatic arthritis usually experience first thing in the mornings. I want to talk more about being active and then sitting down.

Let's say you rest for an hour. What happens when you go to get up? Do you find your body is stiff?

Stiffness and psoriatic arthritis

Lately, I have been experiencing post-activity stiffness it more and more. My psoriatic arthritis always lets me know when I am up doing something. My back is the first thing to let me know I am being more active than usual.

After seven years of dealing with psoriatic arthritis, it has always been my biggest pain. I am always doing a sit-down, get up do something, back to sitting down, again and again like a vicious circle.

It has really only been in the past several weeks that I am finding my body getting more stiff after I sit down.

From being busy to feeling stiff

Since this quarantine has started, I have been so much busier than on a general day. Between myself and my 72-year-old mother-in-law, a lot of my week used to be spent going to doctors' appointments.

Now, between being at home and all of these appointments being canceled, I finally have the time to get more done around my house. It is spring cleaning of the most epic proportion.

Each day I spend time going through everything in a room in my house. When my husband gets home I sit down and spend time with him. Other than cooking, I do nothing else for the rest of the evening. Herein lies the problem: hours of sitting. The thing is, those times spent with him mean everything to me.

Shaking it out

As I stated, I truly enjoy the time spent with my husband. He is my best friend. We enjoy sitting outside and just talking about everything. But of course, mother nature is going to call so I have to get up to make a bathroom run.

Well, I should say slow-motion movement toward that direction. When I get up from my chair I am instantly hit with this wave of stiffness. My husband likes to say that I am a young woman still but I move like a 90-year-old. Please don't take that as him being mean.

He usually puts it in a way that makes me laugh. However, I do have to admit he is right with what he is saying. I do move slow when I get up. It's the stiffness I feel so I have to move around more until it subsides. I know my body.

A story about psoriatic arthritis and stiffness

A few years ago we took a long drive to Chicago. I live in Louisiana. We were going to attend a conference put on by the National Psoriasis Foundation. Seeing as it was a 16-hour drive, so we split the difference by getting a motel. Of course, being in Chicago, we had to sight-see.

I knew I over-did it with walking, especially on that last day. So now we are in the car heading back - an eight-hour drive to the motel. The bathroom stops were the worst. I would get out of the car and "oh my" at the stiffness. I walked so slowly.

This was the first time my husband said I was walking like a 90-year-old There were landscapers there. I asked one if I could borrow his shears to take care of a little problem. He looked at my husband and says, "Ma'am, that is not a little problem."

Do you feel stiff after being active?

I hope that story made you laugh a little bit. It sure did make us laugh. Every now and again that story comes up when we are talking, more so on days when I have been really busy and that stiffness comes when I sit down.

There is no way I am the only one with psoriatic arthritis that experiences that post-activity stiffness. Yes, you can say it comes along with age. However, having psoriatic arthritis makes this possible at any age.

Do you experience this same problem? Do you find it is worse when you have been busy throughout the day? I would love to hear your comments on this situation.

This article was originally written by Vickie Wilkerson and published on our sister rheumatic community, Psoriatic-Arthritis.com.

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