Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis. Also known as "wear and tear" arthritis, it is often caused by trauma or repetitive use. It involves inflammation of the cartilage at the end of the bones within the joint space or the fluid sac surrounding the joint (synovium). When the cartilage is broken down, the bones can rub against each other, causing pain, inflammation, and stiffness. In advanced stages, bone irregularities develop.

While we think of our bones as fixed entities, they are really in flux, depositing calcium in response to stress. Healthy stress such as weight-bearing exercise can increase or maintain bone density, which is why exercise can help prevent osteoporosis. When the bones are improperly aligned, and the cartilage has worn down, bones begin to deposit calcium in unhealthy ways: you may then develop bones spurs and other irregularities, and these can inflame nerves and other surrounding tissue.


How the Gokhale Method can help

We can teach you the proper alignment that is key to protecting cartilage and preventing bone irregularities. For example, you can learn not to park your hips forward in a way that causes significant misalignment of the head of femur and the hip socket. Unless you correct the alignment, the muscles that bridge the area become tense, reducing the natural gap between the ball and socket. Misalignment can eventually wear down cartilage and result in bone to bone contact. Tense muscles can impede circulation to the hip, further handicapping the area.

osteoarthritis A healthy gait is also relevant to the health of the hip joint. In the swing phase, you want to let the muscles of the leg relax, allowing the leg to suspend from the hip socket like a pendulum, reestablishing a healthy joint space. Too many people tense their leg muscles throughout their gait, predisposing them to arthritis.

Where can I learn more?

For correct alignment of every part that is vulnerable to osteoarthritis, you should take the complete six-session Gokhale Method Foundations course, or work through the whole book: 8 Steps to a Pain-Free Back .

* Information provided is for informational purposes only and is not intended to substitute for medical advice from a healthcare professional.