Orthopedics This Week reports on a study finding that osteoarthritis patients benefit from walking and should not fear that walking might cause increased damage to their joints. “People with osteoarthritis can decrease the possibility of developing physical limitations by walking more,” according to physical therapist Daniel K. White, Sc.D., PT, of Boston University, and his colleagues.
- Increased steps (1,000 more steps per day) were associated with a lower risk for later deterioration whether assessed on an objective performance-based measure or on a self-report measure.
- Walkers who totaled 5,000 to 7,500 steps per day cut their risk of complications from osteoarthritis in half.
- Less than one-third of primary care physicians advise their patients with osteoarthritis to walk.
- White and his group suggest that physicians who are recommending walking to their patients set an initial goal of 3,000 steps per day.