Working out to improve your overall health and endurance with a simple physical activity like walking or cycling is an excellent way to stay fit, shed a few pounds, and keep your joints healthy.
However, certain activities, especially if you have excess body weight, can put an immense amount of pressure on your knees and potentially damage your knee joint.
If you have knee pain but want to continue to work out, you may find yourself asking “Is walking or cycling better for your knees?
In the article below, we will talk about the best exercise option for people with knee pain; walking or cycling?
Why Cycling Is Good for Your Knees
The main reason cycling is great for your knees is because it puts less stress on your joints.
This is great for people with arthritis and other conditions that affect the knee joint.
Whether you use road bikes, stationary bikes, mountain bikes, or recumbent bikes, cycling limits, cycling is not a high-impact exercise. It will limit impact stress on weight-bearing joints like your knees.
Plus, the movement when you pedal the bike helps lubricate your joints and, in turn, reduces pain and stiffness.
Bicycling can also be done at a wide range of intensities.
You can go as fast or slow as you’d like, coast for a little bit, use lower gears, or go all out if you’re in the mood.
Peer-reviewed studies have shown that people with knee osteoarthritis can benefit from low-intensity cycling. It can improve function and gait, decreasing pain, and boosting aerobic fitness.
Moderate pedaling can promote an increased range of motion in your knee and hip and strengthen your quadriceps.
Cycling also works your glutes and hamstrings, and strong muscles surrounding the knee can help support and protect your joints.
Why Walking Is Good for Your Knees
Your knee joint is made up of bone and cartilage.
Cartilage doesn’t have a blood supply that nourishes it, relying on joint fluid for nutrition.
Moving your joints is the best way to ensure the cartilage receives the nourishment it needs to stay healthy.
Many people notice stiff and sore joints, particularly their knees, in the morning or after they’ve been sitting for a while.
When you move your joints, you help them maintain their function and help keep them functioning longer.
The easiest and most straightforward type of exercise to move your knee joints is a brisk walk.
Regular exercise, even something as simple as a walk around the neighborhood, can help you shed excess weight and improve your overall quality of life.
Walking can help you build and maintain muscle, which is important in supporting your knee and maintaining function.
Weight-bearing exercises like walking also helps maintain bone health.
When deciding which exercise is best for you, whether it’s daily walking or cycling, you should speak with your doctor if you have a condition that causes knee pain.
Both walking and cycling is recommended for many people, but it may not be suitable for you.
Cycling Is Better For Obesity Prevention
There was a study done in London that investigated the relationship between various commuting methods and obesity risk.
Data from the 150,000 participants revealed that walking and cycling showed much better results than taking a car or public transport.
Walking was associated with a significantly reduced BMI and body fat, but not as significant as cycling.
The average participant who cycled to work weighed about 11 pounds less than someone similar who drove their car.
Riding a Bike
Cycling is often touted as a preferred alternative to walking or running because it’s a low-impact exercise.
This is especially important for people dealing with knee pain.
However, cyclists tend to have their own set of knee problems.
Research has shown that knee pain is the most common lower-body injury in cyclists.
The top contributing factors to this knee damage are changes in equipment and biking distance and intensity.
Excess body weight also means you have to apply more force when you pedal, which increases the stress to your knees.
Consider The Barrier Of Entry
All you need to start walking is a decent pair of shoes, making it much cheaper than cycling.
If you decide to walk frequently, you can invest in a better pair of running shoes and breathable workout clothes.
If you plan on walking in the dark, reflective clothing might not be a bad idea.
If you’ve never cycled before, you might want to borrow or rent a bike to try it out before investing in the hobby.
There are also plenty of ways to get a really nice used bicycle.
You will also need to buy a helmet, lights, and reflective gear if you plan on riding your bike at night.
Some people even prefer to use padded gloves and shorts to make the bike ride more comfortable.
Or, you could always join a gym and use their bicycles, whether an assault bike for an extreme workout or a stationary bike or recumbent bike.
When it comes to the barrier to entry, it is much easier to get started walking than it is to get started cycling.
Cycling Or Walking For Knee Pain?
Both cycling and running can benefit people with knee pain and show many other benefits, like improved cardiovascular health.
If you’ve never done walking workouts or cycling workouts, you can slowly build up endurance and strength to keep the exercises enjoyable and sustainable.
Talk to your doctor and give them both a shot.
Unless your doctor recommends against it, you can’t go wrong with either exercise.
Choose the activity that suits your health needs and lifestyle, or you can do both along with other aerobic exercises to keep a varied exercise routine.
It’s important to know when to see a doctor for knee pain, and when you do, call Ethos Health Group for the best treatment.
Contact Ethos Health Group
If you have knee pain that is too severe for cycling or even walking, you should contact Ethos Health Group.
Ethos Health Group has developed its proprietary HyalRegen-CT method as a comprehensive solution for those suffering from knee arthritis and pain.
Lubricating injections are performed with precision imaging guidance, so we know we’re targeting precisely the right area.
This advanced medical process serves to add cushioning fluid back into and around your knee, like oil for a squeaky hinge.
Even more exciting, these FDA-cleared injections can help your knees stimulate more of their natural fluid, giving you long-term benefits and relief.
These injections can allow you to start walking or riding a bicycle to stay fit and healthy.
If you want to learn more about what the Ethos Health Group can do for your knee pain, click the button below to schedule a free consultation.