Is jogging bad for knees?

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If you’ve been a jogger for a few years, you’ve probably been given some advice from people who are, surely, just trying to help. You’ve probably heard that jogging is too hard on the knees and that you are going to end up with knee problems if you keep up with your favorite hobby. However, research shows that jogging, if done correctly, may actually be good for your knees.

What does jogging do to knees?

With the constant stress of your feet pounding on the pavement as you run, it is no wonder that many people think this is too much for your knees. For years it has been a common myth that jogging increases wear and tear on the knees and can even lead to problems such as osteoarthritis. Studies, however, show that the bone and cartilage of the knee adapt to this stress, which can lead to stronger knees.

There is an important warning that goes along with this information, though: you should avoid certain things that will give you pain and problems with your knees. Avoid:

• Bad shoes. Make sure you have shoes that fit you properly and that are made for running. Proper arch support, width, and cushioning do make a difference. A running store can fit you for the correct shoe for you.

• Bad running form. There is a correct way to run to reduce stress on your legs and feet.

• Rough surfaces. Asphalt or cement can result in even more stress to your knees. Try running on a softer surface, such as grass or a treadmill.

• Ramping up your running schedule too quickly. If you are a new runner, increase your running time slowly.

• Running if you are in pain. Pain is your body’s way of trying to tell you something is wrong. If your knees hurt, it is better to take some time off than risk running.

If you have noticed knee pain after running, you should take a few days off, rest, and apply ice. If your knees still hurt after a few days, contact Sports Occupational and Knee Surgery in San Antonio, TX for an appointment. Call (210) 696-9000.

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