A new study has revealed that walking can help to prevent knee pain for those suffering with osteoarthritis. The research, carried out by the Baylor College of Medicine, highlights the long-term benefits of walking regularly for patients over 50. Additionally, it also suggests walking could be an effective way to slow down damage within the joint.
So, how can walking help to prevent knee pain caused by osteoarthritis, and what other treatment options do patients have? Find out everything you need to know below.
What did the study reveal?
The study, published within the Arthritis & Rheumatology journal, used the results of a multiyear observational study known as the Osteoarthritis Initiative. Participants aged 50 and over, self-reported the frequency and amount of time they spent walking. Those who reported that they exercised more than 10 times were categorised as ‘walkers’, while those who didn’t were categorised as ‘non-walkers’.
It was discovered that the walker group had a 40% reduced chance of developing new frequent knee pain. Additionally, the results showed that walking regularly can help to slow down degeneration of the joint.
How can walking help to prevent knee pain?
Walking is best known for its cardiovascular benefits. However, as the new study shows it can also be useful in pain reduction of the joints. So how does it help to prevent knee pain?
There are several reasons walking could help to reduce pain in the joints. These include:
- It can help to rebuild the joint
- Weight management
- Strengthened muscles
In osteoarthritis, the cartilage of the knee can become damaged and worn. When you walk, it helps to rebuild the cartilage, reducing the pain experienced over time. This can also aid in mobility, further reducing the risk of further degeneration.
Walking also helps to keep your weight under control. Being overweight puts a lot of pressure onto the joint, leading to additional pain. By managing your weight, it will help to ease the pressure on the joint, effectively minimising the pain felt.
Finally, walking regularly helps to build up and strengthen the muscles. This in turn helps to take the pressure off the joint, reducing pain felt in the knee.
Treating knee osteoarthritis
While this new study highlights the benefits of walking to ease knee pain, it is worth noting that knee osteoarthritis won’t just go away by itself. You may delay suffering pain and mobility issues, but the condition may worsen as time goes on.
In order to treat knee osteoarthritis, patients should seek advice from a specialist. It could be that knee replacement surgery is required to reduce pain and improve mobility.
Book a consultation with Mr Shah Punwar now to determine whether a knee replacement could be the best way to treat your knee pain permanently.