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  • If you like to run, someone has probably warned you that you're wrecking your knees.


  • The idea is that when you run, the flexible, tough tissue that cushions your knee joints, called cartilage, takes a pounding.


  • And over time, that cartilage supposedly wears down, which makes your bones rub together, and leads to the pain, stiffness, and swelling of osteoarthritis.


  • But is this actually true?


  • Past studies that compared runners to non-runners, sometimes collecting data over a couple of decades, have found mixed results.


  • A few have found that there's more risk of knee osteoarthritis in specific groups of runners, like in men younger than 50 who run more than 32 km a week.

    有幾個研究顯示,某些特定群組的跑者會有較高的風險罹患骨性關節炎。比如一週跑步距離超過 32 公里、年紀小於 50 歲的男性。

  • But lots of papers comparing long-term runners to swimmers, non-runners, or sedentary people didn't turn up evidence that running will doom you to arthritic misery.


  • In some cases runners even seemed to be less likely to get arthritis.


  • So could running actually protect your joints somehow?


  • To find out, a study published in 2016 looked at what's happening inside your knees when you run.

    為了找出答案,2016 年有項研究就觀察了人在跑步時膝蓋內的運作。

  • Scientists gathered a group of male and female runners, younger than 30 with no history of knee problems.

    這些科學家找了一群年齡在 30 歲以下、膝蓋沒有受過傷的男性及女性跑者。

  • And brought them in for two experiment sessions over two days.


  • They started each session by collecting a blood sample and a bit of synovial fluid, the natural lubricant inside the knee joint.


  • Then they had the participants spend 30 minutes running on a treadmill one day, and 30 minutes sitting on another day.

    然後一天請跑者花 30 分鐘在跑步機上跑步,另一天則是坐 30 分鐘。

  • Afterward they took more samples.


  • Getting a useful amount of fluid from healthy knees, turned out to be pretty tricky.


  • And the researchers only ended up with complete data for 6 people.

    這些研究者最終只有 6 組完整的數據。

  • But the results are still interesting.


  • The scientists were looking for molecules related to inflammation, because extra inflammation has been linked to the development of arthritis.


  • They were also measuring a compound called cartilage oligomeric matrix protein, or COMP, which can be a marker of arthritis if there's a bunch of it in your synovial fluid.

    他們也在測量一種叫做軟骨寡聚基質蛋白 (COMP) 的複合物,因為如果你的滑膜液中有些 COMP,代表你有可能有關節炎。

  • After running, the subjects had less of these molecules in their knees, and more in their blood, spread out in their bodies.


  • Sitting, on the other hand, slightly increased concentrations of COMP and some other inflammatory molecules in their knees.

    另外,久坐不動,反而會讓 COMP 的濃度提高,膝蓋裡也存有其他的發炎分子。

  • It's hard to tell exactly what this means.


  • But it seems like running might squeeze inflammatory compounds out of your knee, which could reduce cartilage damage and arthritis.


  • But this study did have a pretty tiny sample size, so... Jury's still out!

    但是這項研究的樣本數不足,所以... 尚未定論!

  • But if you like running and it makes you feel healthy, the next time someone says, "But you'll ruin your knees!"


  • Take it with a grain of salt.


  • Thanks for asking and thanks especially to all our patrons who keep these answers coming.


  • For more running-related science, check out this other SciShow video, where Hank explains why you get that sharp pain in your sides sometimes.

    若是你想看更多和跑步有關的科學影片,看看這部影片吧!Hank 會在影片中解釋為什麼有時跑步,腹側會疼痛。

If you like to run, someone has probably warned you that you're wrecking your knees.


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