Does Running Cause Arthritis?
By: Tim Garrison, PT, Doctorate of Physical Therapy
No! Numerous researchers confirmed there is no progression of arthritis with running. According to a study by Lane et al., “Running was not associated with more rapid progression or increased incidence of osteoarthritis of the knee or the spine.”(1) This was after a 5 year study of age matched individuals who ran regularly or did not run.
But haven’t you always heard that running causes your knees to go bad? This may be a common misconception but science has debunked it. Plus, the benefits of running are profound! Running has been shown to maintain bone density (1), strength (3), body weight (5), and improve mental health (2). Running can also help you live longer (4). This explains how Harriette Thompson became the oldest person to finish a marathon at age 92!
On the other hand, regular running can lead to minor injuries like tendinitis and overuse injury. That is where the Doctors and Physical Therapists at OrthoMaryland can help! Physical Therapists are movement experts best situated to help keep you running your best. Physical Therapists understand how to get your tendinitis and overuse under control then direct your return to running. OrthoMaryland therapists use technology to record and analyze your running, then implement strategies to help you run like the pros! Our Physical Therapists will analyze your flexibility, strength and running then create a plan for all aspects of running which include footwear, strength training, flexibility, speed, and improving recovery.
By Tim Garrison, PT, Doctorate in Physical Therapy, F-license soccer coach. Tim works at the Quarry Lake office and has a passion for runners and exercise, and conservative management of arthritis and overuse injuries.
- J Rheumatol.1998 Feb;25(2):334-41.The relationship of running to osteoarthritis of the knee and hip and bone mineral density of the lumbar spine: a 9 year longitudinal study.Lane NE1, Oehlert JW, Bloch DA, Fries JF.
- Dunn, A. L., M. H. Trivedi, et al. (2005). "Exercise treatment for depression Efficacy and dose response." Am J Prev Med 28(1): 1-8
- Endurance training delays age of decline in leg strength and muscle morphology. Tarpenning KM, Hamilton-Wessler M , Wiswell RA , Hawkins SA School of Human Movement Studies, Charles Sturt University, Bathurst, NSW, Australia. firstname.lastname@example.org Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise [2004, 36(1):74-78]
- Arch Intern Med.2008 Reduced disability and mortality among aging runners: a 21-year longitudinal study.
- Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2009 Mar; 41(3): 523. Lower prevalence of hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, and diabetes in marathoners. Paul T. Williams, Ph.D.