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Archive for June 23rd, 2010

obese man walking

small steps - big results

University of Massachusetts – Biomechanics and Energy Metabolism Laboratories:  Associates at the lab note that being overweight is the one risk associated with osteoarthritis that a patient can most easily change.  The lab is working on a walking program for obese people that increases the amount of energy a person uses (promoting weight loss) and minimizes the wear and tear on arthritic knees.

The idea is to walk with short, fast steps.  The results compared to “normal” walking is a small but significant increase in energy usage.  This may be beneficial for obese people in losing weight and managing their knee osteoarthritis.

Think about this, what if patients in the study used knee braces while walking?  Could they walk even farther and expend more energy?  Maybe the next study will look at this….

Russell EM, Braun B, Hamill J. Does stride length influence metabolic cost and biomechanical risk factors for knee osteoarthritis in obese women?  Clin Biomech (Bristol, Avon). 2010 Mar 1; [Epub ahead of print].