Why Walking Is NOT An Effective Knee Pain Treatment

Why Walking Is NOT An Effective Knee Pain Treatment

You’ve been suffering from daily knee pain and decided to look for some solutions online, right?

You found some exercises you can do but you’re not quite sure if these are the right exercises for you. What the heck, you have nothing to lose – so you try some of these exercises for a couple of days, but you don’t see any results.

Chances are, you didn’t stick to the exercises long enough to see a difference, but you weren’t really sure what you were doing because you tried to follow along with the posted photos. You got frustrated and didn’t continue.

Time continues to go by and you are finding it difficult to do daily tasks. Now you are just getting through the day despite the pain. However, the pain is finally enough that you go to the doctor.

So, you finally decide to go to the doctor and he tells you to “start a walking program.”

He (or she) may or may not have taken an X-ray. Either way, they say – “you probably have some arthritis in your knees.” They tell you that exercise is good for arthritis and send you on your way to start a “walking program.”

WHAT?!?! That’s it?! (Talk about a waste of a $20 copay)

You have no other choice now than to listen to the doctor, so you do just that – you start to walk. You even invite some friends along to make it more fun.

Sometimes you walk while listening to some music.

You’re walking your life away, but your knee pain is getting worse — not better.

It especially hurts when walking up hill or down hill. What is going on you wonder?!

Well, to put it bluntly – your leg muscles are weak and walking is not helping to get them stronger.

A study showed that women who walk at least 10,000 steps do not have greater muscle mass and do not perform better on balance tests.

The women who walked at least 10,000 steps were compared to women to walked less than 7,500 steps.

What it did show was that it was good …”for the prevention of cardiovascular risk factors” because the women who walked at least 10k steps had a smaller percentage of body fat – but again no increase in muscle mass.

Why is muscle mass even important when talking about your knees?

Because stronger muscles help to support the knee joint.

Stronger muscles help to improve the mechanics in which your knee works thus decreasing your knee pain.

What kind of strengthening exercises should you do then?

Get this 30 day knee rehab calendar (videos included)    30-day-knee-rehab with Dr. Siobhan France

So, in the end, there is nothing wrong with walking, but walking alone IS NOT ENOUGH. You have to add strength training into your daily regimen, and you have to stay consistent to see a real change.

I always tell my patients give me at least 30 days for you to see some results. Your knee pain didn’t come on overnight – so it’s going to take a little more effort than just a few days to see results sometimes, but most importantly get LASTING RESULTS.

Check out the video below on why one of my patients was pissed off about the doctor telling him “to start a walking program.”


Talk again soon, 
~Dr. France