Exercise not Linked to Increased Joint Pain


By D.C. Tworek, NASM CPT, Nutrition Specialist

Does your fear of joint pain keep you from being physically active? A new study determined that moderate physical activity does not contribute to joint pain, regardless of your weight.

For years researchers have debated the potentially negative impact of physical activity on the joints, particularly for overweight and obese individuals. The study, published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, followed more than 30,000 men and women in their mid-forties of normal, overweight and obese BMIs, for eleven years. Each BMI category was divided into 2 groups – those who exercised and those that did not.

The study found that the risk of osteoarthritis of the knee was four times higher in obese individuals than normal weight individuals, but the risk was not increased due to physical activity. There was little difference in the incidence of other forms of osteoarthritis, including the hips, among three categories – exercising or not.

The study did not confirm the type of exercise performed by the subjects, so high contact sports may contribute to joint pain, but a brisk walk, light jog or bike ride will make you healthier, slimmer and won’t increase your risk of shaky joints.

Please consult your doctor before engaging in a new exercise program.


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