Six-week gait retraining program reduces knee adduction moment, reduces pain, and improves function for individuals with medial compartment knee osteoarthritis

J Orthop Res. 2013 Jul;31(7):1020-5. doi: 10.1002/jor.22340. Epub 2013 Mar 12.


This study examined the influence of a 6-week gait retraining program on the knee adduction moment (KAM) and knee pain and function. Ten subjects with medial compartment knee osteoarthritis and self-reported knee pain participated in weekly gait retraining sessions over 6 weeks. Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) scores and a 10-point visual-analog pain scale score were measured at baseline, post-training (end of 6 weeks), and 1 month after training ended. Gait retraining reduced the first peak KAM by 20% (p < 0.01) post-training as a result of a 7° decrease in foot progression angle (i.e., increased internal foot rotation), compared to baseline (p < 0.01). WOMAC pain and function scores were improved at post-training by 29% and 32%, respectively (p < 0.05) and visual-analog pain scale scores improved by two points (p < 0.05). Changes in WOMAC pain and function were approximately 75% larger than the expected placebo effect (p < 0.05). Changes in KAM, foot progression angle, WOMAC pain and function, and visual-analog pain score were retained 1 month after the end of the 6-week training period (p < 0.05). These results show that a 6-week gait retraining program can reduce the KAM and improve symptoms for individuals with medial compartment knee osteoarthritis and knee pain.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Arthralgia / physiopathology
  • Arthralgia / rehabilitation*
  • Biomechanical Phenomena / physiology
  • Female
  • Gait / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Knee Joint / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / physiopathology
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / rehabilitation*
  • Pain Measurement
  • Physical Therapy Modalities*
  • Range of Motion, Articular / physiology*
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Treatment Outcome