For the millions and millions of sufferers looking for knee pain relief, strength training could provide the key answer. In researching short-term studies of knee pain patients, Professor Stephen Messier found a need for further understanding of knee pain relief through strength training. His study, START, could provide patients with new, non-surgical knee pain relief options.
Messier’s study, Strength Training for Arthritis Trial (START) will involve 372 adults aged 55 or older. A grant from the National Institutes of Health will make the study possible. START will be the first study to address the subject of how long-term strength training could affect knee pain and provide needed relief for arthritis sufferers.
An earlier pilot study proved to Messier and his team that knee pain sufferers are capable of high-intensity strength training. This earlier evidence suggests that strength training, in addition to reducing fat and adding muscle mass, improves the composition of the thighs. “The increase in muscle and decrease in fat may lower knee pain and slow the progression of the disease,” he explained.
Adults who participate in the study will be assigned to one of three groups: one that trains with greater resistance at fewer repetitions, one with a low-resistance and high-repetition routine, and a third who will do only stretching exercises while attending healthy living classes that teach weight management and other health-related topics.
The IDEA study, Intensive Diet and Exercise for Arthritis, showed a 50 percent reduction in knee pain among adults who lost weight and exercised to find knee pain relief. Since many adults don’t find success losing weight with diet and exercise, Messier hopes to provide strength training as a second option for those seeking nonsurgical knee pain relief.
Knee pain relief
Strength training may soon add another option for those struggling with knee pain, but there are many tried-and-tested methods already available. Physical therapists use stretching, massage and many other techniques to strengthen muscles around knees. Sufferers can even get re-trained in the way they move, and learn new ways to walk and exercise without putting so much strain on their knees. Consult with a physical therapist to learn more about nonsurgical knee pain relief.
Over-the-counter supplements can help reduce inflammation to provide knee pain relief as well. Studies suggest that physician-monitored injections may not provide long-term relief, and prescription medications often carry unpleasant side effects with them. Supplements that can be purchased easily, without a prescription, provide an easy option when pain flares up.
Find more ways to dull the pain with our free special report, 5 Keys to Knee Pain Relief Without Surgery.