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Effects of Exercise and Physical Activity on Knee Osteoarthritis

Abstract

Exercise is one of the most discussed and controversial nonpharmacologic management strategies for osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee. Health care providers and patients share varied and often pseudoscientific beliefs regarding the effects of exercise on knee OA formulated on outdated notions of the etiology, pathophysiology, and progression of the condition. Based on the contemporary literature, regular light to moderate physical activity has both preventive and therapeutic benefits for individuals with knee OA. Exercise regimens with strong evidence of benefit include those that focus on aerobic/cardiovascular conditioning and lower extremity strength training. Health care providers should confidently incorporate exercise recommendations into clinical management and offer patients evidence-based and individually tailored exercise prescriptions to help manage the painful and often disabling symptoms of this condition.

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    Correspondence to Allison Bailey.

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    Esser, S., Bailey, A. Effects of Exercise and Physical Activity on Knee Osteoarthritis. Curr Pain Headache Rep 15, 423–430 (2011) doi:10.1007/s11916-011-0225-z

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    Keywords

    • Pain
    • Arthritis
    • Knee osteoarthritis
    • Exercise
    • Physical activity
    • Quadriceps strength
    • Weight management
    • Weight loss
    • Diet
    • Traumatic injury
    • Cycling
    • Aerobics
    • Cardiovascular exercise
    • Therapy