Some types of exercise may actually put more strain on your veins, such as yoga, sit-ups and weightlifting.
Simply put, exercise helps stem the progression of varicose veins and increases overall circulatory health. Aerobic exercise has beneficial effects on varicose veins, particularly when the activity utilizes the calf muscles of the leg. Since these muscles act as a physiologic pump of the lower extremity, the use of these muscles encourages the return of venous blood back into the truncal circulatory system.
Conversely, strenuous exercise that involves minimal aerobic activity and straining of the abdominal muscles actually has negative effects on the venous circulation. Increasing abdominal pressure can ultimately impair the return of blood back to the heart, further exacerbating venous reflux and venous insufficiency. These exercises include prolonged abdominal posturing (yoga), sit-ups, crunches, weightlifting, and lunges.
Simple lower extremity exercises such as walking and jogging can help the circulatory system and facilitate the return of venous blood back to the central circulatory system.