Osteoarthritis can be seen as a reason to avoid exercise. However a great infographic from the Institute of Bone and Joint Research shows that even if walking and doing some exercise may hurt the answer is not to avoid those activities as they are both important.
Doing some exercise is one of the best ways to support yourself to live with osteoarthritis whatever your age or level of fitness. Regular exercise that keeps you active, builds up muscle and strengthens the joints usually helps to improve symptoms. For example there is evidence that for those with osteoarthritis in the knee then strengthening the muscle in the front of the upper leg can lead to improvements in pain and function.
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Osteoarthritis in the knee and exercise.
Exercise can play a vital role in managing osteoarthritis. People are often fearful of exercising the affected joint in case it causes further pain and damage yet this review of studies done on exercise programmes states "People with OA should be reassured that it is unlikely to exacerbate their pain if performed using the appropriate methods and at the appropriate dose."
In this post I am going to talk specfically about osteoarthritis. I need to state there is no cure for osteoarthritis and whilst no single gene found has been found which indicates osteoarthritis there is research which shows a genetic factor. There is also an occupational factor so if you have a heavy physical work load then that is a risk. Along with the following
- regular stair climbing,
- whole body vibration
- repetitive movements.
Now that list may make you roll your eyes as most of them (apart from crawling!) are part of daily life but there are things that might be able to help slow down the process.