The benefits of exercise with . . . osteoarthritis

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Geraldine is 54 years old and has osteoarthritis (OA) in her right knee. After a dedicated amateur sports career, she underwent some surgical procedures on her knee in the late 1990s. While she’s not sure of the exact details of the surgery, she certainly remembers having part of her meniscus (shock absorbers) removed. knee). She also had some knee cartilage damage. Right now, Ella Geraldine is determined to avoid having a knee replacement, but she fears the worst.

His pain levels have increased significantly in the last six months, seemingly out of nowhere. She had been trying to walk regularly (twice a week) with her two friends, but sadly it became apparent that she was holding them back. This really affected her mood. She tried to recover by going for a walk alone. On these attempts, she walked carefully and a bit more slowly, but eventually her pain levels stayed the same or even got slightly worse.

Now knee pain wakes her up at night. She has stopped walking and has also gained weight in recent months (3 kg). Her mood is generally not good and she is frustrated that her knee is not responding, despite her determination. In truth, repetitive walking has meant that the knee doesn’t have time for the OA inflammation to settle.

Keep exercising but use different methods.

Geraldine is no different than the vast majority of knee osteoarthritis patients. At first, the knee pain came on suddenly, with a simple twist as she walked her dog. Right after, a friend of hers had to help her walk and she was scared that something was seriously wrong. In the days that followed, she became cautious about fully bending, straightening, or bearing weight on the knee for fear of causing further damage.

A couple of weeks after this episode, people who knew her commented that she had a limp, which she found very frustrating. She didn’t realize that her limp had become noticeable. She also noticed that she leaned on the railing a lot when she went downstairs, which was never the case for her. Geraldine has a compromised knee right now, no question about it. Although her surgeon told her the knee would one day become arthritic, she thought she could have gotten away with it until recently, clearly not.

Currently, all signs and symptoms suggest that Geraldine is taking a break from walking, but more importantly, not exercising. She just needs to use different methods for a few weeks, mainly strength training and aerobic exercise involving partial or minimal weight bearing. There are many important reasons for this change in focus.

Improved circulation, reduced inflammation and increased strength.

As soon as Geraldine stopped exercising, her general circulation did not improve. She already knew this and was very frustrated as a result. However, she couldn’t solve the problem by trying to walk away, so she reluctantly gave up. This also caused weight gain which further exacerbated the problem in the knee joint. In fact, Ella Geraldine needs to exercise vigorously for 75 minutes a week, according to the American College of Sports Medicine guidelines for exercising with OA. But she needs to perform this exercise in a way that doesn’t impact her knee joint. Therefore, aerobic exercise at a relatively high intensity (on a stationary bike or elliptical trainer) will be quite effective in improving circulation within the knee joint.

Working in these higher heart rate zones ensures that oxygenated red blood cells are transported throughout the body. This has many health benefits, but in this case the swollen knee is a particular beneficiary, as the joint capsule is nourished and invigorated without causing further pain. Low-impact strength training is the other vital component of Geraldine’s new training regimen. Geraldine needs to train all of the large muscles that support her knee to get stronger. The combination of vigorous aerobic exercise and low-impact strength training has been shown to regenerate synovial fluid, which has a major impact on reducing inflammation in/around the knee cartilage.

Geraldine’s knee will begin to bend and straighten more easily. She will be able to bear weight more easily and gradually eliminate that limp. If Geraldine manages this program for a minimum period of six weeks, she significantly improves her chances of walking with her friends again. What a result that would be!

The benefits of exercise with . . .
1) Type 2 diabetes
two) Osteoarthritis

– Andy Dunne is a Clinical Exercise Specialist and Chartered Physical Therapist in Personal Health – Medical Exercise Clinic, based in Dublin or nationwide online. If you have a medical condition, your suitability for an exercise program should be evaluated by a professional before you begin.

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