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Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2017 Aug;27(8):873-886. doi: 10.1111/sms.12694. Epub 2016 Apr 30.

In hip osteoarthritis, Nordic Walking is superior to strength training and home-based exercise for improving function.

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Institute of Sports Medicine Copenhagen, Bispebjerg and Frederiksberg Hospitals, University of Copenhagen and Center for Healthy Aging, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.
Musculoskeletal Rehabilitation Research Unit, Department of Physical & Occupational Therapy Bispebjerg and Frederiksberg Hospitals, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.
The Research Unit for General Practice and Section of General Practice, Department of Public Health, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.
Department of Radiology Bispebjerg and Frederiksberg Hospitals, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.


This observer-blinded, randomized controlled trial compared the short- and long-term effects of 4 months of supervised strength training (ST) in a local fitness center, supervised Nordic Walking (NW) in a local park, and unsupervised home-based exercise (HBE, control) on functional performance in 60+-year-old persons (n = 152) with hip osteoarthritis (OA) not awaiting hip replacement. Functional performance [i.e., 30-s chair stand test (primary outcome), timed stair climbing, and 6-min walk test] and self-reported outcomes (i.e., physical function, pain, physical activity level, self-efficacy, and health-related quality of life) were measured at baseline and at 2, 4, and 12 months. Based on intention-to-treat-analyses improvements [mean (95% CI)] after intervention in number of chair stands were equal in all three groups at 4 months [ST: 0.9 (0.2-1.6), NW: 1.9 (0.8-3.0), HBE: 1.1 (0.1-2.0)] but greater in the NW group [1.4 (0.02-2.8)] than in the ST group at 12 months. Generally, improvements in functional performance were greater (P < 0.001-P < 0.03) after NW compared with HBE and ST at all follow-up time points. Furthermore, NW was superior (P < 0.01) to HBE for improving vigorous physical activity and to both ST and HBE for improving (P < 0.01) mental health. These data suggest that NW is the recommended exercise modality compared with ST and HBE.


RCT design; aerobic training; exercise therapy; functional performance; hip; osteoarthritis; resistance training

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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