Nix Knee Pain—at Any Age!

Keep your knees happy despite osteoarthritis? It’s not a fairy tale, insists Grimm star Bree Turner. At 37, the actress has already learned how to outsmart the joint damage caused by her lifelong love of dancing.

Linda Childers
More Sharing +
Bree Turner, Grimm, Arthritis, Dancing

Not many moms with two toddlers would relish splitting time between a home in Southern California and a job in Portland, OR. But for Bree Turner, it’s a dream come true. “I love television—it’s the new golden age and I’m thrilled to be part of it,” says the actress, who plays a half-human, half-fox character on the hit series Grimm, a supernatural drama inspired by classic fairy tales. “You have to work hard, so it’s really satisfying when you get the opportunity that changes your career.”

Which explains why Bree doesn’t complain about 14-hour workdays—or about the sore, achy knees it often causes her. “If I stand for long periods of time, or go for long car rides, I feel pain and stiffness in my knees at the end of the day,” she notes. 

You see, long before Bree started acting, she was a professional dancer, appearing in movies like The Big Lebowski and the second Austin Powers. “I was in countless performances, doing aggressive and athletic dance moves, but I never wore protective knee pads,” admits Bree. “As a result, I now have arthritis in my knees.”

But isn’t she too young to have osteoarthritis (OA)? Not according to studies like the one at Indiana University, which found that former college athletes were nearly twice as likely to be diagnosed with OA in middle age than non-athletes. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that nearly two-thirds of the 50 million Americans with OA are under 65, and your overall odds of developing knee OA are nearly 1 in 2.

It makes sense, then, that years of complex dance moves took a toll on Bree’s joints. Still, she does have one advantage: She lives with an orthopedic surgeon!

Married for six years to Justin Saliman, MD, of Cedars-Sinai Orthopaedic Center in Los Angeles, Bree says Justin’s advice allows her to keep active at work and at home when chasing after their kids, Stella, 4, and Dean, 1½. “I want to avoid knee surgery as long as possible, so Justin gives me ideas on how to keep my knees strong and flexible.”

April 2014