One of the most common myths is that running ruins your knees so let me share new research that shows why runners have a lower risk of osteoarthritis. If you are a runner you are well aware of all the ways people probe runners about the state of their knees. As a distance runner I am also questioned in how my knees are holding up. When I reply that I feel great, people attribute this to my young age but I have run 19 marathons, thousands of miles and my knees feel great. What about you, runner, how are your knees? Let me share with you new research that supports why runners have a lower risk of osteoarthritis?
1. Activity Strengthens Your Joints
Lack of activity is actually the highest contributor to osteoarthritis. A recent study from the National Institutes of Health discussed the importance of exercise such as running or walking to aid in preventing knee problems. This is why runners have a lower risk of osteoarthritis.
2. Running Helps Lubricate Your Knees
When you exercise, particularly running, your joints get lubricated. Numerous orthopedic doctors have referred to exercise as lubricating your joints like a well-oiled machine. Have you ever began a run feeling stiff and then after a mile felt amazing? Now you know why. And this is another reason why runners have a lower risk of osteoarthritis.
3. Runners Usually Have a Lower Body Weight
Since running is one of the highest calorie burning workouts, runners usually have a leaner body and lower weight. This lower weight helps put runners at a lower risk of osteoarthritis. The Arthritis Foundation states that every one pound less on your body takes 2-3 pounds of pressure off your knees.
4. Runners Are Usually Better Eaters
There are always exceptions in every group but most runners are more conscious of eating healthy food. Studies show that people that exercise tend to make wiser and more nutrient dense food choices. Start making food choices for your health. You only have one life so live it right and help ward off sickness by treating healthy food as your natural medicine.
5. Contact on Ground is Shorter when Running
Researchers from Queen’s University in Canada examined 75,000 runners and proved that regardless of age, since the contact on the ground was shorter in running, runners had a lower risk of osteoarthritis. The key in this study was that you cannot be overweight by more than 20 pounds or your joints will be under more pressure. This is great news for many runners!
6. Runners Often do Dynamic Stretching
Runners often do dynamic stretches or stretch while in motion. These stretches will help lubricate your joints and strengthen them as well. This is another contributor to aid in the prevention of osteoarthritis so make sure you stretch well
7. Running is a Fun and Effective Way to Get in Shape
Running is a lot of fun, especially if you run with a friend. Running will help you to manage a lower weight and get into a regular routine along with strengthening and protecting your joints. So get out to explore the world by enjoying a run!
Are you ready to go the distance and stop fearing the impact on your knees? Hope you have a great run! Yours in love with health and fitness!