Essentially, our body is designed for performing activities like walking, running, kneeling, traditional Indian cross-sitting on the floor and climbing up stairs and down, that require us to bend our knees regularly.
It is a popular myth that preforming these activities can wear off the cushioning on the joint, causing arthritis. What’s less known, is the fact that these movements inturn help to keep the cartilage intact, in the long run. Studies amongst exercising and non-exercising adults, with arthritis have shown that those performing exercises have less pain, are able to get back to function early and remain better 1 year later without the use of drugs.
How does this work?
The cartilage receives its nutrition from the fluid present in the joint space. It is like a sponge which throws water and waste products out when pressed, and absorbs the fresh water and nutrients when unloaded. Regular loading and unloading helps to maintain a healthy cartilage.
Rule of use or lose
Your body is like your money in the stocks. You have got to keep it moving; use it else lose it.
Our bones become stronger and packed with calcium when we involve ourselves in exercises like jumps, squats, lunges that put load on them. Loading is healthy because just like us, our body too sees it as a challenge that will only help it emerge out stronger. Similarly muscles, if not used go into disuse atrophy and lose their strength and flexibility. As age advances, it is furthermore imperative for us to intersperse our sedentary living patterns with bits of mobility exercises away from the desk. To start with, a short walk around the alley every hour can prevent joint stiffness in our air-conditioned zones.
Arthritis no more means medicines, passive rest and open invitation to obesity. The rules have changed. Its now a motivation to get moving, think prevention and get a rapid cure through correct exercise. Go up on your knees! Defy aging, redefine arthritis!