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Why Winter Can Make Your Aches And Pains Feel Worse

Dr. Arnan Sisson, PT| October 18, 2022

Before you know it, we’ll be fully into winter.

It’s that time of year when, quite often, you need to spend 5 minutes de-icing your car before you can go anywhere.

But it’s not just our cars that need a little bit more care at this time of year.

Do your joints feel strange and a little bit stiff this time of the year?

Maybe they ache more than usual?

Do you  notice any clicks and cracks coming from your knees?

There’s been many patients in the past that have been struggling to put their finger on their aches and pains and not sure why it’s happening to them this time of the year.

So you know that you’re not alone.

It happens every year, around winter, joint pain is one of the most common things we see.

Let me know if this sounds familiar…

There’s a few clicks of the knees every now and then, nothing painful and you think nothing of it.

Then as time goes on, whenever your knees click it’s painful and they start to ache a bit more – usually around the kneecap, and on the inside of your knee.

Sometimes after walking around stores, they start to ache and feel sore.

And getting back up again after relaxing with a cup of coffee on the sofa, you start to notice that it takes a few steps for your knees ‘to get going’ again.

Which can make it difficult for you to get out of your car with ease.

Then the cold weather hits the Northern Neck and your joints begin to feel even WORSE.

I’m guessing most of that sounded familiar with knee pain around that time of year.

But why does it happen more and more to men and women aged 65+?

There’s a whole bunch of reasons that exist as to why joints in your body become more problematic in the winter time.

But the two most common reasons we see here at Sisson & Associates are these:

Cold weather naturally restricts the warmth of the blood that flows around your body, which helps keep you warm and mobile.


The fact you’re much less likely to keep as active and mobile in the winter as you are in the warmer months.

Keeping mobile is just like spraying WD40 on the stiff parts of a bike or car.

Like a car needs oil to get from A to B efficiently – your joints need to keep active so they don’t stiffen up.

And here’s the thing that many people don’t realize – the winter months and long periods of inactivity can be the root cause of many years of what I call ‘all of a sudden’ life-long knee pains.

As your muscles get a long rest this winter, there’s a chance they will become weaker and slowly get to the point where they won’t be able to support your knees.

Worse yet, many people don’t even notice it happening until the pain sets in.

Then when it does, a chain of events are triggered and when your knees don’t have the support of strong muscles, problems like arthritis can set in.

Which makes it important to make the most of every opportunity you have this winter to keep active, so you can fight off the curse of bad knees creeping up on you.

It’s easy to think that when the weather starts to warms up you’ll exercise again.

The problem with that is, very few people understand that your muscles need to be strong and stable to exercise safely!

If you go into tough exercise too quick, there’s a chance you’ll injure yourself and make those sore joints even worse!

So, my number one tip for you today to keep the winter aches away is to include some kind of activity in your day, everyday.

It doesn’t have to be outdoors either!

You can book yourself into an exercise class with friends, do low-impact movements that are kind to your joints like Pilates or Yoga from the comfort of your living room.

Even better, if you have an exercise bike or something similar, use it while watching your favorite TV show.

There really is something for everyone.

So what are you going to do to keep active this winter?

For more tips like this and exercises that you can do without having to step foot outside in the cold, click here to receive your free information guide: to help you relieve annoying knee pain, and prevent it happening to you.

For more expert advice, read our other blogs or check out our YouTube channel:


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