Osteoarthritis affects the weight-bearing joints. It’s usually found in the
Most doctors consider osteoarthritis a normal part of aging, but not everyone is affected equally.
Studies of the knee have found that osteoarthritis is caused by muscle weakness (1,2). It is reasonably safe to assume that the same mechanism exists in other locations (osteoarthritis of the hands is probably different since the hands are not weight-bearing).
All movement is controlled by opposing muscles.
In the knee, the quadriceps and hamstrings do most of the work. While we recognise that the muscles move the joint, what is less obvious is that they also prevent movement. Muscles are the engine and the brake.
Reflexes make muscles contract in response to stretch. This prevents damage to joints by limiting excessive, unnecessary or damaging movements.
Every time you walk down a step, your quadriceps has to feel how much stretch it’s under and provide exactly the right amount of counter-force to stop you tumbling down the stairs.
If the quadriceps is weak, it can’t protect the joint as efficiently as it should. Excessive movement results in wear and tear, or osteoarthritis.
Fortunately, it’s easy to test for weakness in the quadriceps if you know how. Watch:
Once we know the quadriceps is weak, the knee-jerk (pardon the pun) response is to recommend exercise.
Sadly, this has limited or lack-lustre results because most weakness is not caused by lack of exercise and therefore can’t be fixed by exercise (4).
Researchers have found that muscle strength often fails to return to normal after most knee injuries and surgery, even with extensive rehab and exercises (5).
They wrongly presume that the injury caused the weakness, whereas it is weakness that predisposed to the injury.
If exercise were the answer then Andy Murray would not need a new hip and elite athletes would not get osteoarthritis, but they do.
Most muscle weakness is actually muscle inhibition.
With inhibition, the nervous system has a limited ability to turn the muscle on. The muscle itself isn’t weak, it’s just not getting the stimulation it should. The only way to restore strength is to find the cause of the inhibition.
Fortunately, it is easy to identify muscle inhibition at the knee if you are skilled at muscle testing.
*NB. Results shown may not be typical. Everyone is different.
Simon King is a musculoskeletal expert who’s primary focus is to treat and prevent musculoskeletal injuries.
Simon is available Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.
He enjoys taking care of amateur and professional sports people as well as patients with chronic pain and/or disability.
In my mid 50s and fairly sporty – I developed a hip ache, aching joints, discomfort in my foot, pain when kneeling and various other “niggles” which physiotherapists and my osteopath couldn’t find a long term fix for. My Yoga instructor suggested I visit this clinic and saw a kinesiologist. I googled it initially and had it not been for the recommendation from her I would have been put off by the on line video of kinesiology in practice as their appeared to be very little “hands on” treatment. However, the result was astonishing! After the first half an hour of treatment I skipped out of the clinic without foot pain, was diagnosed and treated for thyroid problems (who knew?) had a hernia sorted out (again, a surprise to me) and my hip pain totally disappeared. Since then I’ve had one more visit after having a mercury filling removed from a tooth to finalise all the corrections and complete the treatment and feel better than ever. I realise now that just because we’re getting older we should not accept aches and pains as a natural progession of ageing! I now have a three month maintenance check up to ensure everything is working correctly and prevent future potential problems from developing. Worth every penny. –
I’ve been applying your afferent input technique for a couple of months now, and am happily amazed by some of the results!
Several of my “old” patients are now a lot better because of a nervous system irritant that was still hindering them. My favorite case is still a 16 year old girl with a two year history of headaches, dizzyness and a once-a-month attack of epilepsia. After taking out her belly button piercing and 5 adjustments she hasn’t had a headache, hasn’t been dizzy nor had epilepsia. Super! As a result, now I am treating her mother and father as well.
13 years ago, I had a car accident where I apparently suffered whiplash. As a result, I suffered acute back problems, culminating in me slipping two discs when I fell down the stairs. I spent thousands of pounds on reflexology, Chinese homeopathy… I just wanted to find something that worked! My local chiropractor thought it might be linked to my crown (the same year as my accident, I’d had a metal crown put in) and put me in touch with Simon.
I can remember my husband saying at the time what have you been told now! So we both went and visited Simon in Berkhamsted, and Simon asked me to do the dumbbell test, where he asked me to lift a dumbbell with my left and then my right hand. My right hand just wouldn’t move until he told me to cover my crown, and then yes, I could move it! On Simon’s advice, I had the crown removed and replaced with a non-metal version. I can honestly say that my back has improved ten-fold, instantly my strength came back… I’m no longer on tablets every day and I’m not crying every day.
I am no athlete just caring for my 87 year old Dad at the near end of his life. I walked in off the street last Wednesday thinking I might need a psychiatrist, but also I thought I could do with a chiropractor. Simon King was very welcoming and gave me an instant assessment by testing my muscle tone, he soon honed in on my weak points and applied very accurate well in tuned adjustments that transformed me from feeling overwhelmed and emotional to feeling pretty damn good! Thank you Simon!
Simon aka the “muscle strength guy” is amazing at finding small weaknesses and correcting them quickly. Would thoroughly recommend.