Named  Best Physical Therapy Practice in Northern Virginia  by Virginia Living Magazine

COVID-19 Update: In the interest of protecting everyone’s health and safety during office visits,
we are requiring all patients to wear a mask while attending their physical therapy appointments.

How Exercise Protects Cartilege

“We have known for some time that healthy exercise is good for you—
now we know the process through which exercise prevents cartilage degradation.”

  • A recent study reveals the process through which cells, specifically cartilage cells, respond to mechanical loading In the study published by Osteoarthritis and Cartilage (2019), researchers found that compressive and tensile forces, placed on the tissues in our joints during exercise, suppress inflammatory molecules.
  • During exercise, a protein called HDAC6 is activated, which changes the formation of tiny hair-like structures (primary cilia) found on our cells,
  • Decreased elongation of primary cilia successfully prevented the inflammatory process, which is associated with conditions such as osteoarthritis.
  • In conclusion, moderate exercise appears to have a protective effect on the cartilage present in our joints such as hips and knees.

Moderate exercise includes activities which elevate heart rate between 50-70% of your maximum heart rate and are not aggressively high impact.

Some examples include: brisk walking, biking, dancing, and golfing.

In addition to the physical activity you choose to participate in, you should always incorporate muscle strengthening exercises, flexibility, and core stability/balance exercises. In order to preserve the integrity of your joints including back and neck, it is very important to stay in safe ranges of motion while performing these exercises.

Extreme joint ranges and over training with excessive weights or training frequency can often lead to injuries and overuse syndromes.

As experts in the musculoskeletal field, physical therapists are an excellent resource for exercise recommendations to meet your specific needs and to avoid risk of injury.

In the unfortunate event of an injury or if pain is preventing you from participating in proper exercise, the experts at Blaser Physical Therapy are here to address your symptoms, review your exercise routine, and provide the best information to return you to exercise safely! No doctors prescription is required!

Contact us at to request an appointment or call us at (540) 341-1922.

Named “Best Physical Therapy Practice in Northern Virginia,” by the readers of Virginia Living Magazine, Blaser Physical therapy is always here to optimize your physical health safely!!

Source: Fu S, et al. Mechanical loading inhibits cartilage inflammatory signaling via an HDAC6 and IFT-dependent mechanism regulating primary cilia elongation. Osteoarthritis and Cartilage. 2019.