The Ottawa panel clinical practice guidelines for the management of knee osteoarthritis. Part one: introduction, and mind-body exercise programs*

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To identify effective mind-body exercise programs and provide clinicians and patients with updated, high-quality recommendations concerning non-traditional land-based exercises for knee osteoarthritis.


A systematic search and adapted selection criteria included comparative controlled trials with mind-body exercise programs for patients with knee osteoarthritis. A panel of experts reached consensus on the recommendations using a Delphi survey. A hierarchical alphabetical grading system (A, B, C+, C, D, D+, D-) was used, based on statistical significance (P < 0.5) and clinical importance (≥15% improvement).


The four high-quality studies identified demonstrated that various mind-body exercise programs are promising for improving the management of knee osteoarthritis. Hatha Yoga demonstrated significant improvement for pain relief (Grade B) and physical function (Grade C+). Tai Chi Qigong demonstrated significant improvement for quality of life (Grade B), pain relief (Grade C+) and physical function (Grade C+). Sun style Tai Chi gave significant improvement for pain relief (Grade B) and physical function (Grade B).


Mind-body exercises are promising approaches to reduce pain, as well as to improve physical function and quality of life for individuals with knee osteoarthritis.

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