Is Running Bad for Your Knees? Joint Health 101

One of the most common misconceptions that keeps people from running is that it ruins your knees. What are the real risks of damaging your joints? Find out what the science says about joint health and how to adjust your form to protect your knees. 

Does running increase your risk of osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis (OA), also called degenerative joint disease, affects millions of people around the world. It occurs as the cartilage that cushions your joints gradually degenerates over time. Degenerative joint disease can be caused by injury, but most often is part of the aging process and symptoms sometimes show up after the age of 50. Typical symptoms of osteoarthritis are stiff, sore joints and/or swelling around the affected areas.

While many people believe that the impact of running on your knees and hips will contribute to cartilage damage, research shows that the reduction in BMI resulting from running has a positive effect on joint health.(1, 2)

How can I change my running form to protect my knees?

Now we know that running actually lowers your risk of osteoarthritis, what other knee injuries do runners experience and how can you avoid them?

Runner’s Knee (IT Band Syndrome), Jumper’s Knee, and Pes Anserinus are the most…

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