Joints: Which sports are useful for osteoarthritis

Painful joint disease: These sports can relieve arthrosis
Around five million people in Germany have osteoarthritis. The pain that arises from the wear and tear of the joints is often difficult to bear. Therefore, many affected people spare themselves. However, exercise in arthritis can often relieve the discomfort. Experts explain which sports are particularly suitable here.

Five million Germans affected
According to the German Society for Orthopedics and Trauma Surgery (DGOU), almost every third 45- to 67-year-old in Germany suffers from arthrosis. At the age of over 65 years, the joint wear already affects every second. According to the German Arthrosis Aid, osteoarthritis is the most common joint disease in Germany with around five million people affected. Many sufferers take care of themselves because they are in pain or are unsure about the strain they can put on their joints. But the right sport in the right amount can help to slow the progression of osteoarthritis.

Treatment options for osteoarthritis
Osteoarthritis causes inflammation of the joints, which can swell, hurt and lose mobility.

In the acute case, it is about knowing what really helps those affected. Health experts often advise pain medication or heat or cold applications.

Naturopathy also relieves osteoarthritis pain and stiffness. These include devil's claw and nettle extract.

In addition, traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) treatment options and procedures such as acupuncture, cupping or Qi Gong are suitable for osteoarthritis.

Nutrition also plays an important role. With osteoarthritis you shouldn't eat meat and only a little cheese. Last but not least, people are usually advised to lose weight if they are overweight or obese.

Moving a lot and putting little strain
In addition, people with osteoarthritis are usually advised to exercise gently to prevent the symptoms and to increase the function of the joints.

In the run-up to the German Congress for Orthopedics and Trauma Surgery (DKOU) 2017, experts will explain in a message which sports are useful for orthopedic diseases.

"In the case of joint problems, the sporting principle applies: move a lot, put less strain on," says Prof. Dr. Andrea Meurer, Congress President of the DKOU 2017. "Cyclical movements are ideal, which move the joint evenly without using force."

A combination of endurance sessions, stretching and strengthening exercises is most effective for strengthening the whole body and preventing injuries. The expert recommends exercising 30 to 40 minutes a day, but at least twice a week.

Sports such as squash, hand, foot or volleyball, jogging, horseback riding, alpine skiing and tennis are rather harmful to the joint due to the abrupt change of direction and the high impact loads. Only those who tolerate them well can exercise them in moderation.

Suitable sports
Cycling or swimming can have a soothing effect on joint diseases.

Sports such as Nordic walking, cross-country skiing, aqua jogging and aqua aerobics, rowing, aerobics, endurance training on the cross trainer and strength training in the gym are also good for the knee joint.

"It is important that patients pay attention to their body awareness and consult their doctor in the event of pain," emphasizes Meurer. "In general, it is important to slowly get the joints used to the movement and to avoid overloading," said the expert.

Bandages or special insoles can additionally protect the knees. Obese patients should first try to reduce their weight, because extra pounds increase the strain on the knees: when walking, twice as much weight is on the joints as when standing.

Under no circumstances should patients fall into a protective posture, explains the orthopedist. “Anyone who hardly moves - for example, for fear of pain - produces less synovial fluid. The cartilage in the knee joint then becomes brittle, which leads to even more wear and pain. "

A lack of activity also increases the risk of being overweight, falling or osteoporosis. (ad)

Author and source information

Video: Stages of Knee Osteoarthritis (January 2022).