Does Exercise Help Varicose Veins? Here’s What You Should Know

by | Jul 22, 2022 | Blog | 0 comments

One of the best ways to promote optimal vein health is to exercise regularly and keep your body moving.

Sitting or standing for long periods of time can cause your veins to take on too much pressure, leading to spider or varicose veins in your lower legs.

Daily movement reduces your risk.

Whether you’re living with varicose veins or hoping to prevent them from forming, exercising has been proven to help. Not only does exercise reduce your varicose vein symptoms and your overall risk of your enlarged veins worsening over time, but it also helps to prevent them from forming to begin with.

Let’s dive into understanding the benefits of exercise and how daily movement may help prevent varicose veins completely.

First, What Are Varicose Veins?

​​Varicose veins are enlarged, twisted veins that appear on the skin’s surface of the legs and thighs. They become noticeable, even without symptoms, by giving off a blueish-purple color.

They occur when healthy veins become overfilled with blood due to poor circulation and damage to the venous valves.

Varicose veins are most common in women aged 50 and older but can affect anyone at any age, especially if you have a family history of them.

They can appear due to a variety of factors, including

  • Pregnancy
  • Menopause
  • Obesity
  • Standing or sitting for long periods
  • Poor circulation


The most notable symptom of varicose veins is a vein that appears lumpy and twisted on the skin’s surface.

Other common symptoms include

  • Aching, heavy and uncomfortable legs
  • Swollen feet and ankles
  • Muscle cramps
  • Dry skin
  • Color changes in your legs

The best way to reduce your risk of developing varicose veins and their associated symptoms is to eat a healthy, balanced diet and exercise regularly.

Does Exercise Help Varicose Veins?

The short answer is yes.

If you have varicose veins, exercise can ease the discomfort of symptoms you may be experiencing.

Exercise helps with varicose veins by

  • Improving circulation
  • Toning muscles

Both of these aspects reduce your risk of developing varicose veins.

Although working out cannot prevent varicose veins completely, it plays a significant role in healthy circulation. Some exercises are more effective than others.

Let’s explore the top four exercises you should add to your schedule for better circulation and varicose vein risk reduction.

Four Exercises That Can Help With Varicose Veins

1.  Walking

Walking is considered a cardiovascular exercise. It can be highly effective in preventing varicose veins or reducing their overall symptoms.

While walking is great for vein health, it also helps to strengthen bones and muscles, maintain a healthy weight, lose excess weight, and improve blood pressure and total cardiovascular health.

Walking is often considered a safe, low-impact exercise option for all ages, body types and fitness levels with the convenience of being done anywhere you choose.

2.  Cycling

Riding a bike is a great low-impact way to improve your cardiovascular health, leg strength and overall circulation.

Regular biking can help build up your calf muscles, allowing blood to flow more freely through them.

The better the blood flow in your lower legs, the less likely you are to develop varicose veins.

The best part? You can opt for an outdoor bike, a mountain bike, or an indoor stationary bike and achieve the same benefits and results.

3.  Leg Lifts

These simple yet effective leg exercises do not require any special equipment to perform and can be done anywhere.

They help improve leg strength, full-body circulation and flexibility.

You can perform them lying or standing.

4.  Lunges

Lunges are an ideal exercise for overall leg strength.

They are considered a full-leg workout since they work various muscles throughout the leg simultaneously.

The stronger the muscles in the legs are, the easier it is for blood to flow through them, reducing your risk of varicose veins and their underlying symptoms.

Advanced Varicose Vein Treatment

Virginia Vein Care offers the most effective treatment options to take care of your varicose veins. Using minimally invasive techniques, you will not require extensive surgeries or downtime.

If you’re hoping to reverse the effects of poor circulation or the appearance and symptoms of varicose veins, please visit a Virginia Vein Care location near you.