According to Anderssen, Thorstensson, Roos, Petersson, Heinegard, and Saxne (2006) exercise is a treatment recommended for osteoarthritis to strengthen joint stability and reduce pain. A new study was developed to monitor tissue proteins of the knee joint in groups of patients suffering from osteoarthritis and recognize that mild walking can alter the proteins, suggesting a benefit to the patient. The study recommends further testing and research, but recognizes that a relationship exists between exercise and arthritis.
On a personal level, I have had both of my knees replaced and can attest that exercise has been my saving grace before and after my replacement surgery. Even though pain can get in the way of the emotional want to be active, the overall outcome can greatly decrease arthritis pain on the knee joint and increase physical mobility. Although I could not avoid knee replacement surgery, I have still found that exercise minimizes my pain and increases mobility and I believe it will always be a staple in my existence to ensure a more positive quality of life.
Anderssen, M., Thorstensson, C., Roos, E., Petersson, I., Heinegard, D., & Saxne, T. (2006). Serum levels of cartilage oligomeric matrix protein (COMP) increase temporarily after physical exercise in patients with knee osteoarthritis. BMC Musculoskeletel Disorders, 7(98), 1-8. Retrieved from ESBSCOhost database.