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Running is often perceived as bad for your knees.1 In particular, concern exists regarding the development and progression of knee osteoarthritis due to long-term exposure to running.1
Despite these fears, recreational running does not have negative consequences on knee joint articular cartilage in runners without symptomatic knee osteoarthritis2 3 and may actually be beneficial for long-term joint health4 (see figure 1). Only 3.5% (95% CI 3.4% to 3.6%) of recreational (amateur) runners have osteoarthritis (knee or hip) compared with 10.2% (95% CI 9.9% to 10.6%) of sedentary individuals.4 However, a dose–response relationship may be present; 13.3% (95% CI 11.6% to 15.2%) of elite or ex-elite runners (competitive professional athletes of an international level) had osteoarthritis, a higher rate than seen in recreational …