LIFESTYLE

Robbie Williams Reveals He Has Arthritis - And It's Affecting His Dancing Skills

'I dance like a drunk dad at a wedding.'

11/10/2016 17:24 | Updated 12 October 2016

Robbie Williams has said he wants to do another tour, but audiences will have to expect a more subdued show.

The performer has been diagnosed with arthritis and it’s affecting his ability to dance and play football.

“I’ve got arthritis in my back so I can’t put my foot through a ball,” he told The Evening Standard.

“I have very tight hamstrings, barely existent calves. I dance like a drunk dad at a wedding. But I’ve got to do something to fill the time on stage.”

Dave J Hogan via Getty Images

According to the NHS, arthritis can affect anyone at any age, but is most common in people in their late 40s and over.

At 42 years old, Williams is reasonably young to be diagnosed with the illness.  

The condition causes pain and inflammation in joints, making movement more difficult than usual.

The most common type of arthritis is Osteoarthritis, which affects 80% of the 10 million people living with arthritis in the UK.

“Osteoarthritis initially affects the smooth cartilage lining of the joint. This makes movement more difficult than usual, leading to pain and stiffness,” the NHS website explains.

“Once the cartilage lining starts to roughen and thin out, the tendons and ligaments have to work harder. This can cause swelling and the formation of bony spurs, called osteophytes.”

If a person experiences severe loss of cartilage, this can lead to bone rubbing on bone, altering the shape of the joint and forcing bones out of their normal position.

While there is no known cure for arthritis there are several treatment options available that may limit symptoms of the illness.

The majority of people with be prescribed painkillers, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or corticosteroids (often known as steroids).

In severe cases, surgery is needed to alter the way bones are interacting with one another.

Williams shared his diagnosis ahead of World Arthritis Day, which will be marked on 12 October.  

The theme of this year’s day is “It’s in your hands, take action”, which aims to inspire people to live their lives to the fullest, by sharing personal stories from those successfully living with arthritis. 

You can get involved by sharing your story using the hashtag #WADStory. 

Commenting on Williams’ news, Liam O’Toole, chief executive officer at Arthritis Research UK said: “We are sorry to hear that Robbie Williams is experiencing back pain caused by arthritis.

“By talking about his experiences, he is shining the spotlight on the condition affecting over 10 million people in the UK.

“Today is World Arthritis Day, and our new campaign Share your Everyday is calling for people affected by arthritis to share their day-to-day experiences, like Robbie has done, to help push back the limits of arthritis by visiting www.arthritisresearchuk.org/shareyoureveryday.” 

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