Pain

Knee Arthritis Can Chill Exercise

Knee arthritis might be good for eliciting sympathy (or not) but it’s bad for your health, and not just because it hurts. Duke University researcher Alexander Gunn reports that among people with knee arthritis, fear of movement oftens inhibit meaningful exercise. Gunn and his colleagues surveyed 350 people with knee arthritis and found that more than three quarters (77 percent) of them were at least somewhat afraid of making certain movements. And now the drill down: 24.5 percent of participants either agreed or strongly agreed with the statement “I am afraid that I may injure myself if I exercise,” 43.3 percent either agreed or strongly agreed with the statement “If I were to try to overcome it, my pain would increase,” 42.0 percent either agreed or strongly agreed with the statement “I am afraid that I might injure myself accidentally,” and 58.2 percent either agreed or strongly agreed with the statement “Simply being careful that I do not make unnecessary movements is the safest thing I can do to prevent pain from worsening.”  What to do? It won’t hurt (any part of your body) to start with advice from Prevention magazine about the Best and Worst Exercises for Bad Knees or the Arthritis Foundation’s recommended exercises for people with knee arthritis.

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