Education and self-management

Education and self-management forms a crucial part of first-line treatment for people with knee osteoarthritis. Education and self-management should be provided to all people with knee osteoarthritis alongside exercise and weight management.

See the video of Professor Peter O’Sullivan discussing some basic principles of self-management.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Self-management is defined as the tasks that individuals must undertake to live well with one or more chronic conditions. These tasks include having the confidence to deal with medical management, role management, and emotional management of their conditions.

To effectively self-manage a condition, people need to learn about their condition and the best ways to overcome barriers and obstacles that the condition creates. Therefore some people with knee osteoarthritis can use information from this toolkit, or seek assistance from a health professional (for example your Doctor or physiotherapist) to help them improve their own strategies in managing their condition.

As you will find out if you watched the lived experience video from earlier on in this page – learning how to self-manage a condition is a continuous process.

This is a great question and it takes a little thought from yourself (reflection) and maybe a little guidance from a health professional.

To help structure your thoughts we recommend creating your own guide using our personalised guide maker. At the start of all guides we have a reflection exercise for you to think about how you have managed your condition to date and also identify what you want to find out more about. this may help you when you next go see your health professional (for example a Doctor or a physiotherapist)

Before reading what we recommend – check out the below video to understand how people with knee osteoarthritis control their symptoms in a flare-up

Click here to see our flare-up advice page.

Many many people with knee osteoarthritis report having slips, trips or falls as a direct result of their condition. The video below takes you through some more information. If you want to find out more then ensure you select the ‘balance and falls’ section of our personalised guide maker.

For further information about an exercise program to specifically reduce falls risk, click here.


What advice can those living with knee osteoarthritis give you about the management of their condition?

Resources and additional information

Click on any topic to view the resource

Infographic: 21 things everyone with knee and hip osteoarthritis should know (to build infographic then add here)

Infographic: Myths about osteoarthritis (to build infographic then add here)

Infographic: What is osteoarthritis 

Infographic: Why do I have osteoarthritis

Infographic: Symptoms of osteoarthritis (to build infographic then add here)

Infographic: Diagnosing osteoarthritis

Infographic: Treatment options (to build infographic then add here)

Infographic: How exercise benefits osteoarthritis 

Infographic: Pain during physical activity/exercise 

Infographic: What to do in a flare-up (to build infographic then add here)

Infographic: Medications and osteoarthritis (to build infographic then add here)

Infographic: Surgery and osteoarthritis (to build infographic then add here)


Next – Exercise and physical activity