For decades running has been getting a bad rap. Doctors and therapists have been preaching that running causes wear & tear of your joints and gradually destroys your cartilage, saying, “If you want to save your hips and knees, stop running”. Despite the threats, many runners have continued with their hobby and exercise.
It is true that runners get hip and knee pain, BUT SO DO NON-RUNNERS!!
This 2021 review based on 43 articles looked at the influence of running on lower limb cartilage morphology and composition using quantitative MRI.
“…moderate evidence suggests that running does not lead to the formation of new lesions” – Khan et al 2021
The studies do show that immediately after running the cartilage undergoes morphological changes which are explained by natural fluid dynamics, but these changes do NOT persist as the cartilage recovers.
Q: What is the best treatment for osteopenia?
A: Not rest, but optimal loading of the bones
Q: What is the best treatment for sarcopenia or muscle loss?
A: Not rest, but optimal loading of the muscles
Q: What is the best treatment for osteoarthritis or cartilage loss?
A: Not rest, but optimal loading of the cartilage to help build resiliency
So can we all please put an end to the shaming of runners? I personally enjoy my walk/jogs using my Urban poles, it’s optimal for me 🙂
References: Khan MCM, O’Donovan J, Charlton JM, Roy JS, Hunt MA, Esculier JF. The Influence of Running on Lower Limb Cartilage: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Sports Med. 2021 Sep 3.