Chapter : Key Stretches To Help Improve Knee Pain
Having released muscle tightness and improved tissue quality using a foam roller or massage stick, you can now move on to stretching.
This will help to continue the process of taking pressure away from the knee joint and allowing more range of movement in the ankle and hip joints.
These are the 5 key stretches for you to focus on.
Dynamic And Static Fire Hydrant
What It Does: Strengthens the glutes and improves balance.
How to Do It: While holding onto a wall for balance, stand on one leg and move your free leg out and back at a 45-degree angle as high as you can without losing form. Immediately return to the starting position for one dynamic rep. Repeat these dynamic hydrants five times. On the sixth rep, let go of the wall and hold the leg up for 15 seconds while working on balance. Focus on the form of your stance leg , and do not allow your knee to collapse inward. Also remember to keep your hips level.
Start with five dynamic reps followed by a 15-second hold per leg. Up the challenge by adding more sets.
Knee Ligament Sprains Or Tears
These are common among athletes. There are two types of ligaments: collateral and cruciate. You have four main ligaments in your knee: the lateral collateral ligament, medial collateral ligament , posterior cruciate ligament, and anterior cruciate ligament .
Ligaments help keep the bones in your knee stable, but they are prone to injuries, particularly through contact or from changing direction suddenly when youâre running. Sports fans know that ACL and MCL injuries can sideline an athlete for months.
But for most people who donât make their living running full speed or getting hit, it usually takes several weeks to recover.
It can take roughly 8 weeks to recover from surgery to repair a ligament tear. But if you need a major reconstruction of a torn ligament, it can take 6 months or so to get you back to full strength, Bush-Joseph says.
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What Is Knee Valgus
Knee valgus occurs when the femur rotates inward, whether due to structural deformity or weakness in the muscles and ligaments that support the knee.
When it occurs both knees point towards one another in a standing position, rather than being pointed forward.
Typically, someone with knee valgus will have their femurs pointed inwards with their hips being in constant internal rotation.
These two factors work together to rotate the knees inwards.
Furthermore, flat feet or collapsed arches normally accompanies knee valgus.
Some people may also have tibia external rotation to compensate for the knock knees.
Exercises For Retraining Weak Glutes
Begin any corrective exercise retraining program with a series of self-massage techniques to increase blood supply, restore and rejuvenate the muscles you plan to target. This will also help prepare them for the stretching and strengthening techniques that follow.3,4
Tennis Ball Massage on the Butt
Tennis Ball on Butt
Lie on your back with your knees bent. Place a tennis ball under the right side of your butt. Scoot your body up and down and from side to side to move the ball to any sore spots you find from the base of your spine all the way out to the side of your butt. You can progress this exercise by placing your right ankle on your left knee. When they do this, place a rolled up towel or your left hand under your left hip to help keep your pelvis level. Do each buttock for 1 to 2 minutes. While a tennis ball is the easiest piece of equipment to purchase and use, a foam roller can also be used to massage the gluteal complex.
Foam Roller on Side of Thigh
The iliotibial band on the side of the thigh attaches the gluteus maximus muscle to the lower leg. Increasing blood supply to this structure will encourage correct movement of the legs and knees.
Foam Roller Side of Thigh
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Why Does It Matter
You want to have strong quads to help you be able to stay standing upright. Weak quads will make it more likely for your knees to buckle and for you to fall. Weak quads will make it more challenging and tiring to walk on even and uneven surfaces. I recommend patients and other people maintain strong quads by doing various exercises including the quad set and SLR at the easier level, and squats, step ups, step downs and lunges on a more challenging level.
Thats how I check to see if my patients quads are strong enough and these are the two exercises I choose between to start them with to get going on improving the strength.
Why Are We Prone To Knee Problems
Our bodies are predisposed to injuries of the extensor mechanism because the hip joints are wider than the knees in a neutral standing position. The natural Y-shaped configuration to the leg bones promotes uneven contraction of the quadriceps, and problems such as hyperextension of the knees make these natural imbalances even worse. As a result, when we contract the quadriceps to straighten the leg, the unevenness of the contraction tends to pull the kneecap to the outside, thanks to the greater pull of the outermost quadriceps .
The innermost quadriceps is most responsible for counteracting this pull. This muscle tends to be weak and underused, while the outer thigh muscle tends to be stronger from overuse. So if you want to keep the knee healthy , you need to learn to strengthen the vastus medialis. In fact, physical therapists consider exercises to strengthen this neglected muscle key in the rehabilitation of knee injuries.
Structural misalignments tend to limit the vastus medialis& apos proper functioningand can even weaken it in relation to the other quadriceps muscles, making it even harder to work with.
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Anatomy And Function Of The Gluteus Maximus Muscle
Traditional anatomy texts teach us that the gluteus maximus muscle originates on the back of the pelvis and lower back area, travels across the back of the hips and attaches on the outside of both the upper and lower leg .1,2,4 We also learn from these books that the function of the gluteus maximus muscle is to help push the hips forward and rotate the leg outwards.2
Figure 1: Anatomy of the Gluteus Maximus Muscle
However, information on functional anatomy teaches us that this muscle works very differently during weight-bearing activities like walking, running, lunging and squatting.3,4 During these activities this muscle works in a lengthening fashion like a bungee cord to help decelerate both the upper and lower leg as they move forward, side to side and over the foot. In this regard, the gluteus maximus muscle is directly involved in decelerating stress to the knee and helping reduce pain and injury to this area .3,4
Figure 2: Real-life Function of the Gluteus Maximus Muscle
Check For An Anterior Pelvic Tilt
The presence of an anterior pelvic tilt can contribute to knee valgus.
An anterior pelvic tilt is where the front of your pelvis is tilted downwards and the back tilted upwards.
A pelvis which is held in such a position may cause the femurs to internally rotate which forces the knees to turn inwards causing the knock knees.
To give yourself the best chance of fixing your knee valgus its a good idea to check if you have an anterior pelvic tilt, and look to do corrective exercises to stabilise your pelvis.
See our anterior pelvic tilt page on symptoms, how to test for it and how to fix it.
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Important Tips For Knee Exercises
Before starting the strengthening exercises, you need to know a few things:
- Wear a knee support. Wearing a knee support will give your articulation more stability, so it won’t swell up as easily. You definitely need to wear a brace when exercising.
- Use topical anti-inflammatory. The use of a topical anti-inflammatory is absolutely vital. You may think that is not that important, but if your joint puffs up, you won’t be able to do the exercises anymore, so you’ll stop.
- Use an exercise bicycle. An exercise bicycle is the best and safest way to exercise your quads.
- Use NSAIDs only when absolutely needed. The painkillers should always be the last resort. There are serious side effects associated with oral NSAIDs.
How Do I Lubricate My Joints
How to Keep Your Joints Lubricated & Move with Ease Move It. Motion is lotion for our joints. Stay Hydrated. We know its important to overall health, but staying hydrated specifically helps lubricate and cushion our joints. Prioritize Healthy Fats. Sleep Smart. Increase Hydrochloric Acid. Add Glucosamine.
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How Long Does It Take To Recover From Knock Knee Surgery
The amount of time it takes to fully recover from knock knee surgery will ultimately depend on the person.
It may take you at least 2 months of recovery after surgery before you can begin doing some weight bearing activities.
After 6 months most people who undergo this form of surgery can return to doing their normal activities before the procedure.
N’chifukwa Chiyani Mawondo Anga Amasweka Ndikakhala Squat
Panthawi yochita masewera olimbitsa thupi ngati ma squats ndi mapapo, mphamvu yomwe ili pamabondo anu imatha kuwononga mpweya uliwonse womwe umakhala mu synovial fluid pafupi ndi bondo lanu , kuchititsa kuti mumve phokoso kapena “kuphulika” , akufotokoza zolimbitsa thupi zochokera ku Minnesota Meyi 7, 2021.
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Side Steps With Resistance Band
The outer quad muscle tends to be weaker than the muscle that runs along the top of your thigh, which leads to the kind of imbalance that causes your kneecap to pull out of line. The solution? Strengthen that outer muscle, says Butts.
How to do it:
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Treating Knee Pain And Weakness In The Knee
Recent headlines touting the dangers of opioid addiction are making people think twice about grabbing that prescription bottle. Besides, according to Wijtmans, taking pain medication only coversup the problem but doesnt fix it. A specialist can help uncover the root of your knee pain, he notes.
Once the cause of knee pain is determined, your care provider will discuss a treatment plan with you. This often involves lifestyle and dietary changes, says Wijtmans, as well as exercises tailored to your age and activity level.
For osteoarthritis issues, Barr says, corticosteroid and viscosupple-mentation injections can help reduce pain for six months or longer. For people who are interested in regenerative medicine, PRP is very, very effective and can last quite a long time, she says. This treatment helps to regenerate tissues from within.
Barr recommends aquatic therapy and cross training to help improve muscle balance, especially for people recovering from an injury or surgery. Everything is about the balance of power, she says. How our muscles work together is key to optimal joint function.
In addition to exercise programs and injections, options for treating knee pain include acupuncture, cupping, dry needling and dietary changes. Rest, elevation, compression and ice can also help. Barr often prescribes supplements, such as turmeric and fish oil, for her patients, as well as adaptogens .
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How Is Knock Knee Diagnosed
An orthopedic specialist will review the patients medical and family history, any pre-existing conditions and current health. They will also do a physical examination of the legs and gait. Standing-alignment or images will help confirm the diagnosis. These are radiological images of the leg from hip down to the ankle, which help the doctor locate the exact location and mechanical axis of the deformity.
Reasons Your Back Muscles Are Weak And How To Fix This
In this blog post I am going to outline 5 key reasons your back muscles are weak and what you can do to help them.
You see, based on my own fight against lower back pain and the research I carried out, weak back muscles are definitely to blame for many of the lower back ailments we experience.
In fact, I later learnt while carrying out my research that leading orthopaedic specialists believe 80% of back problems are due to weak lower back muscles.
When these muscles are weak they can no longer support your spine and as a result strain is placed on the ligaments and spinal structure causing you pain in your lower back.
Most of the time you probably wont realise you actually have weak lower back muscles.
Instead this will catch you off guard in the form of an injury which will cause you pain or limit your movement.
Common injuries associated with having weak lower back muscles include sprains, strains and herniated disks.
Before I talk about these injuries, lets look at what causes your lower back to go weak in the first place so we can learn and educate ourselves on what to look out for.
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Stretch & Release Tight Adductors
The adductors are a group of muscles that run the length of the inner thigh and groin area, if these muscles are too tight, they will cause the knees to buckle inwards.
As a result, someone with knee valgus will find it helpful to begin a program of frequently releasing and stretching these muscles.
Another less commonly explored treatment option for knee valgus is trigger point therapy.
Also known as myofascial release, trigger point therapy focuses on releasing muscle knots deep in the bodys soft tissues in order to increase circulation to the affected area, reduce inflammation, eliminate pain, and restore symmetry to the muscles, ligaments and joints that stabilize the knee.
Myofascial release is a type of manual therapy that is usually performed by a massage therapist, but there are many tools available on the market that can help you achieve myofascial release at home such as foam rollers.
To lengthen the adductors you will want to perform both myofascial release and stretching on them.
To release the adductors, you will need a large myofascial release tool to perform myofascial release.
A standard massage ball is likely to be too small unless you can raise it up somehow. You can use a foam roller like in the video above.
Given the chronic tightness in the adductors, you may have to perform myofascial release several times.
The next important step after releasing the adductors is to regularly start stretching them.
Exercise And Knee Pain
If your knee pain is due to an injury, surgery, or arthritis, gentle stretching and strengthening exercises may help ease the pain while also improving your flexibility and range of motion.
Exercising a knee thats injured or arthritic may seem counterintuitive, but in fact, exercise is better for your knee than keeping it still. Not moving your knee can cause it to stiffen, and this may worsen the pain and make it harder to go about your daily activities.
Gentle stretching and strengthening exercises can strengthen the muscles that support your knee joint. Having stronger muscles can reduce the impact and stress on your knee, and help your knee joint move more easily.
Before you start an exercise program for knee pain, be sure to talk to your doctor or physical therapist to make sure the exercises are safe for you. Depending on your situation, they may recommend some modifications.
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How To Stop Knee Cracking And Popping
If youre having any type of pain, swelling, catching, or locking, those are warning signs that you need to see a doctor, Dr. Slabaugh says. But if youre not having any pain , then doing exercises on your own is very appropriate.
To get started, youll need a few pieces of equipment you can easily find online.
Youll need a long foam roller like this one to do the IT band release.
To alleviate the awkward noises and keep potential injuries at bay, try these exercises, courtesy of Eun Jung Decker at React Physical Therapy, three times a week for maximum results.
Exercises For Wobbly Knees
Q. My knees seem to be kinda wobbly. I never know when they are going to go out from underneath me. Are there some exercises I can do to get them back in shape? Quite frankly, I’m worried about taking a fall.
A. Maybe what you need is a rehabilitation program to increase muscle strength and improve proprioceptive function. Proprioception is the joint’s sense of its own position. Tiny receptors inside the joint send messages to the brain whenever even the slightest change in position or movement occurs.
But any damage to the joint can decrease the joint’s ability to receive and respond to proprioceptive messages. The result can be instability like you are describing.
There can be other factors contributing to an unstable knee. Muscle weakness, ligament ruptures, and cartilage tears are possibilities. It’s probably a good idea to see an orthopedic surgeon who can evaluate your knee specifically. If there’s nothing specifically wrong, then a program of strengthening exercises with an emphasis on proprioception might be just what you need.
You’ll want to include exercises to strengthen the quadriceps , the hamstrings , and even muscles around the hip and ankle. Studies show that exercising in the seated position helps improve motion, strength, and function. But exercises done in the standing position or seated with the feet in contact with some form of resistance is even better.
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