1.Maintain Your Ideal Body Weight
It has been estimated that the force of 3 to 6 times a personís body weight is exerted across the knee while walking. In other words, being 10 pounds overweight increases the force on the knee by 30 to 60 pounds with each step taken while walking. The force across the hip is, at most, 3 times body weight. Losing weight reduces stress on your joints.

2.Exercise Regularly and Participate in Regular Physical Activity
For optimal joint health, itís recommended that people perform 30 minutes of moderately strenuous exercise at least 5 days a week. Itís an established fact that regular exercise has health benefits. Lower levels of exercise can also be beneficial, according to study results. Itís better to get some exercise as opposed to no exercise.

3.Protect Your Joints
There are several joint protection principles, which if followed, will help to conserve energy and preserve joint function. The advice is quite simple, but you must be mindful of proper movements and recognize body signals (e.g., pain). Good posture and proper body mechanics are important because protecting your joints is a factor in osteoarthritis prevention.

4.Avoid Repetitive Stress on the Joints
Signs of repetitive stress include too many uninterrupted repetitions of an activity or motion, unnatural or awkward motions, overexertion, incorrect posture, and muscle fatigue. These symptoms usually are associated with your occupation. Try to find solutions at your workplace and avoid prolonged periods of repetitive stress.

5.Listen to Your Pain
This recommendation seems so obvious, yet people donít always do it. Learning to view pain as a signal that you are overdoing it and that itís time to rest requires conscious effort. Balancing rest and activity is optimal for healthy joints. Itís part of self-management to learn not to overuse your joints and to learn not to push past your limits. Consider that the pain is like a stop sign.

6.Avoid Injury to Joints
Previous joint injury is recognized as a common cause of osteoarthritis. In joints burdened by improper alignment due to injury, articular cartilage wears away and osteoarthritis can begin to develop. Avoid injury if at all possible ó and if you do injure a joint, seek treatment immediately.

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