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Is Walking Good for Arthritis in the Knee?

Walking is good for knee arthritis because it increases the range of motion, prevents stiffness, aids fluid movement and leads to a reduction in arthritis pain.

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By Babafemi Adebajo
Joel Taylor
Edited by Joel Taylor

Published November 30, 2021.

Knee pain is a common complaint across all ages, though it is essential to differentiate regular knee pain from arthritis pain. Generally, arthritis pain is persistent and comes with attendant inflammation, unlike regular knee pain which will often have no associated inflammatory cause.

Is Too Much Walking Bad for Knee Arthritis?

While there are exercises that make osteoarthritis worse, walking isn't one. In fact, walking is one of the most important things for someone with arthritis.

Walking is a low-impact exercise that doesn’t place much strain on the knee. Contrary to popular opinion, too much walking is not bad for knee arthritis. However, aim to build up your walking duration slowly, for a sudden increase can stress the knee and worsen the pain.

Does Walking Help Arthritis in the Knee?

In more ways than one. Walking can increase the knee's range of motion and keep it from becoming stiff due to inactivity. It can lead to weight loss and reduce the stress on the knee. It can also help improve arthritis pain by improving circulation and driving nutrients to the knee joint.

How Much Walking You Should Do for Arthritis in the Knee

Before you start walking, it is important you decide on a regimen. Walking too much too soon can affect your knee adversely. Also, knowing how much walking you can do can help you decide when to use custom orthotics.

How much walking you should do will depend on the severity of your arthritis. For example, research suggests that 70 min per week of moderate-intensity supervised walking was safe and feasible for people with severe OA of the knee. Consult a doctor to determine the severity and then work out a walking regimen based on the recommendations.