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Tips: Exercise leads to aches and gains

If you're bothered by a balky knee, a painful shoulder or stiff joints, you may try to curtail activities that cause the aches. But here's the prescription from doctors at Harvard Medical School: no pain, no gain.

The Harvard Health Letter says exercise can ease pain caused by osteoarthritis, years of bad posture, old injuries and even the effects of aging. Those who cut back on activities because of the pain may weaken their muscles and set themselves up for more health problems.

With a growing number of boomers and seniors opting for hip and knee replacements, exercises that increase strength and flexibility may reduce the pain and help you avert the surgery and its arduous rehabilitation.

For ideas on a good exercise program, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers a PDF version of the book "Strength Training for Older Adults" at 1.usa.gov/exercise-program.

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