Exercise Treatment of Knee Arthritis

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There has been controversy over the years about the effectiveness of aerobic exercise on osteoarthritis of the knee compared with resistance training for people suffering from osteoarthritis of the knees.

The results of a study suggest that resistance training for seniors with knee osteoarthritis is better than aerobic exercise in improving physical function.

The study included over 400 patients with knee osteoarthritis from the general population. They were divided into three study sections which included resistance exercise, aerobic exercise, or education control group. The groups were studied for up to 18 months. The patients needed to be functional without the use of a cane or other assistive device.

A variety of functional outcomes were studied. The results of the study indicated that resistance training for patients with knee osteoarthritis is better in improving physical function than aerobic exercise.

Resistance exercise would include leg lift exercises with free weights, use of a weight bench and therabands, which are often used by physical therapists in teaching patients resistive exercises.

The Many Benefits of Exercise

  1. Better sleeping habits and a more restful night.
  2. Stress is reduced and a person's mood is elevated.
  3. Muscle tone, strength and flexibility improve.
  4. Possible reduction in heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and risk of stroke.
  5. More positive self image.
  6. Puts a person in a better frame of mind with a more positive outlook on life.