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  • Writer's pictureEinav

Dispelling Myths: The Truth About Running and Knee Health



Is running bad for your knees? Am I going to need a knee replacement in 20 years?

This question is a common concern, especially with more people embracing running as their preferred form of exercise. Take me, for example. I work full-time, juggle cooking responsibilities, and care for a two-year-old. I simply don't have the luxury of spending hours at the gym. With running, all I need is a pair of trainers. There's no time wasted on travelling , and I feel like I've had a proper workout by the end of it. But is it good for my knees?


In a recent comprehensive analysis (Voinier. D 2002) of 32 research papers spanning from 2005 to 2020, it was found that recreational running isn't linked to the development or progression of knee osteoarthritis. This means that if you've been diagnosed with osteoarthritis, you can continue running without fear of exacerbating the condition or increasing pain (Hensen. P 2012).


However, before lacing up your shoes and hitting the pavement, it's essential to consider any previous knee injuries, as they can affect your knee's ability to handle running, as well as your BMI, since osteoarthritis is often linked to obesity.


In summary, engaging in recreational running, even up to 25 miles a week, isn't associated with an increased risk of developing osteoarthritis. Furthermore, existing knee osteoarthritis isn't worsened by running. In fact, there's evidence to suggest that running may even be beneficial for the knee joint, with runners experiencing lower rates of osteoarthritis compared to the general population.


While beginners or younger individuals may experience knee cap pain, this is typically unrelated to osteoarthritis and can often be addressed with physiotherapy treatment.


With spring just around the corner , if you're feeling inspired to dust off your old running shoes or invest in a new pair but aren't sure where to start, don't hesitate to reach out for guidance!


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