The Best Gluteus Medius Strengthening Exercises
Now as for the best exercises to strengthen the gluteus medius, two recent large systematicreviews have compared the activation of the gluteus medius during a variety of different exercises.These studies will serve as our primary resource for optimal exercise selection of the glute medius.However, rather than simply performing the highest activating exercises right away, its best in your case to:
Gradually strengthen the gluteus medius by progressing from lower to higher demanding exercises.
…which is exactly what we’re going to do.
Exercise 1: Side Lying Hip Abductions
One low demanding yet suitable non-weight bearing exercise to start out with is something called side lying hip abductions.Research shows are effective at targeting the gluteus medius while minimizing unwanted activity from stronger muscle groups like the hip flexors. Simply meaning that they’re a great way to first experience what it’s like to fire this muscle properly.To do them, lay on your side with your legs straight and feet together. In a controlled manner, lift your top leg to roughly 45 degrees WITHOUT any rotation of your pelvis.Your pelvis should instead stay pointing straight away from you.You also dont want to rotate your toes towards the ceiling to compensate. Instead, you can keep them very slightly pointed towards the floor to better activate the gluteus medius.When done properly, you should feel a strong contraction in the gluteus medius of the leg youre raising up as shown here:
Types Of Stationary Bikes
There are generally three different types of stationary bikes: upright, recumbent, and dual-action. Each one offers slightly different benefits.
Depending on your fitness level, joint health, and workout goals, you can focus on just one bike, or for more variety, you can try all of them at different times.
Testing For Glute Medius Weakness
One easy and quick method to indicate if you have a prominent weakness in your gluteus medius is with something called the “Trendelenburg Test”.
Possible Indication: Trendelenburg Test
Simply stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and lift one foot off the ground.Normally, your pelvis should remain neutral like so and you should be able to comfortably stay in this position.However, if either:
- Your hip drop towards your lifted leg
- OR you have to excessively lean your upper body towards your planted leg in order to hold the position
Then its likely that your gluteus medius on the planted leg side may be weak.
Possible Indication: Compensations During Exercise
Another simple indication is assessing how your knee tracks during lower body exercises.If for example during single leg movements like lunges or the Bulgarian split squat, your knee tends to track inwards as you perform them:And/or; you tend to compensate with excessive leaning over as you perform your reps:Then this is another good indication that the gluteus medius may be weak and not doing its job.
Possible Indication: You’ve Never Exclusively Trained This Muscle
And lastly, if youve never exclusively trained your gluteus medius and feel a strong, intense burn in the hips when performing the exercises Ill provide… Then theres a good chance that it is in fact underdeveloped.
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Knee Pain: What Causes It What Can You Do About It
If you type knee into Google, the suggested topic that pops up first is knee pain.
Thats not a coincidence. At some point, most of us have experienced knee pain caused by everything from everyday wear and tear to sports, recreation or injuries. It knows no age, either. Depending on your activity level and health, you could experience knee pain as a young person, or as a senior.
Other Injuries And Conditions
Because the knee is the largest joint in your body, it is prone to injury and strain. If you fall or bump your knee, you may experience pain from bruising. If youve fractured any of the three bones in your knee, you may experience weakness, sharp pain, or deep throbbing sensations.
Rheumatoid arthritis can present similar symptoms to osteoarthritis, but this autoimmune condition may require different treatments than joint damage caused by the wear-and-tear typical of aging.
If you are experiencing knee pain that interrupts your daily life and persists after several days of rest, consider consulting with a doctor.
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Exercises That Prevent Knee Pain As You Age
Keep your knee joints healthy and pain-free.
Over the course of your lifetime, your knees take a beating. After all, you use them to sit, stand, walk, run, and make countless other movements with your legsand depending on the movement, you put a surprising amount of pressure on your knees. In fact, according to Harvard Medical School researchers, when you walk, the force placed on your knees is equivalent to about 1½ times your body weightmeaning a 140-pound woman puts 210 pounds of pressure on her knees with every step. Walk up and down stairs and that force is 2 to 3 times your body weight. And when you squat down, you place a staggering 4 to 5 times your body weight on your poor knees . Considering this, it’s no wonder so many people complain of knee pain as they get older.
To keep these important joints healthy, first focus on maintaining a healthy weight. “Each pound of body weight can have a significant impact on the stress you place on your knees over time,” says Jake Pacheco, a personal trainer who specializes in knee and hip joint anatomy and founder of Modern Body, an online personal training platform. Then, it’s important to incorporate some key moves into your routine. Here, Pacheco shares his top 5 exercises that’ll help keep your knees pain-free as you age.
Gluteus Medius Strengthening Routine
So to sum all these exercises up, heres what you can do to get started.
Start out with the side lying hip abduction for 3-4 sets for 10-15 reps a few times a week. Focus on first really feeling your gluteus medius work before progressing it by adding a resistance band to the movement.
Once you feel comfortable with step 1, you can then progress to the other two more difficult exercises discussed. Again, you can progress these movements with the use of a band and band placement.Perform these two exercises a few times a week for 3-4 sets each, and within a rep range of 10-15 reps. This can be done either at home or within/after your leg workouts for example. But regardless, they should remain a staple in your weekly routine.
And finally, if youre eventually able to do so without pain, an excellent way to ensure youre firing your gluteus medius during movements like the squat is to place a band around your knees.Forcing your knees to push out against the inward resistance will help you feel what its like to properly use this muscle during the squat.
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Complications And Side Effects Of Pain In The Back Of Your Knee
Some treatments may cause possible complications and side effects. It is recommended to speak to your doctor about the best options available for you. For instance, if you receive peripheral nerve stimulation or genicular nerve blocks, you may experience:
- Nerve damage
- Damage to the surrounding area
- Worsening pain
Other medications may have different side effects. Consult your healthcare provider about possible complications of any medications you might take for relieving pain in the back of your knee.
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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Be Easy On Your Joints
When you exercise, try to avoid high impact exercises.
High impact exercises can injure your knees even more and cause more pain.
Jarring exercises like running, kickboxing, and jumping should all be avoided.
It would be best if you also steered clear of exercises like lunges and deep squats that put a lot of pressure on your knees.
These exercises can worsen your pain, and if you dont do them correctly, they cause injury.
Is Your Knee Pain Making Daily Activities A Chore
Knee pain makes doing daily activities a chore. Walking becomes a love/hate activity. Walking is a recommended way to help reduce symptoms by maintaining muscle mass, reducing blood pressure and also as a way to stay functional by maintaining joint mobility.; Many people are tentative to start a walking program because they think it will create more knee pain!
Contrary to popular belief, walking doesnt make symptoms worse. Daily structured walking programs reduce stiffness and inflammation. Walking is definitely an exercise that is preferred for people with osteoarthritis, it is always recommended to discuss any forms of exercise with your physician when you have a chronic condition. Walking not only helps with reducing pain and increasing joint flexibility; it also helps with bone density, increased speed and a better quality of life.
Walking can help to decrease overall health risks. According to the Arthritis Foundation Walking lowers the risk of blood clots, since the calf acts as a venous muscle pump, contracting and pumping blood from the feet and legs back to the heart, reducing the load on the heart.
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Treatments For Pain In The Back Of Your Knee
Healthcare providers usually treat pain in the back of your knee based on the underlying cause of the pain or injury.
Rest, ice, compression, and elevation
If you have sudden, intense pain in the back of your knee, the doctor may recommend that you rest and apply ice to your knee. In some cases, your doctor may also ask you to elevate your leg while youre sitting down to help improve the blood flow in your leg.
Exercise and physical therapy
Some exercises can help build muscle and relieve pain in the back of your knee. It is important to work with your doctor or physical therapist to determine which exercises are right for you so you can avoid potential injury.
Your doctor may ask you to make some lifestyle changes to help relieve pain in the back of your knee. This could include things like maintaining a healthy weight and avoiding activities like running or placing too much pressure on the knees.
Genicular nerve blocks
This medical treatment blocks pain signals between the knee and the brain, which offers relief from pain in the back of your knee. This is a nonsurgical option done by injecting an anesthetic into the affected area.
Peripheral nerve stimulation
This is a medical procedure where a surgeon puts electrodes and a battery pack near the nerves inside the knee. This creates an electrical current that tricks the body into turning off pain signals, which relieves pain in and around the knee.
What Medical Conditions Cause Knee Pain
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition that can affect any joint in the body. It can cause severe pain and disability, as well as swelling.
Gout is a form of arthritis that is most commonly found in the big toe, though it can also affect the knee. Gout tends to flare up and is extremely painful during the acute episodes. When there is no flare-up, the knee can be pain free.
With , the knee joint can become infected; this leads to pain, swelling, and fever. This condition requires antibiotics and drainage treatments as soon as possible.
Chronic use/overuse conditions
Patellar tendinitis is an inflammation of the tendons connecting the kneecap to the shinbone . Patellar tendinitis is a chronic condition often found in individuals repeating the same motion during exercise .
Patellofemoral pain syndrome is caused by degeneration or stress under the kneecap where it meets the thighbone . Patellofemoral pain syndrome occurs in runners and cyclists.
Osteoarthritis: a wearing down of cartilage of the joint due to use and age
Prepatellar bursitis: Inflammation to the bursa in front of the kneecap may cause anterior knee pain.
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Relieve Pain With Rice
When you use the R.I.C.E. method on your knee, which is rest, ice, compression, and elevation, two to three times a day, you will help reduce inflammation.;
Each step in R.I.C.E. is essential.
The rest phase will give your knees a break from whatever may be irritating or aggravating it.
Icing your knee for up to 15 minutes will reduce inflammation by restricting the blood flow.
Ice also acts as an anesthetic that numbs and relieves pain.
Compressing your knee joint with a wrap or bandage helps by restricting excess blood flow and adding heat to the affected area.
And finally, elevating your knee and leg above your heart will increase your blood flow back to your heart.
That removes excess blood from your knee, allowing it to recirculate faster.
Your posture and how you support yourself will also help relieve knee pain.
When you sit, avoid sitting on low chairs and couches that you will sink into.
You can sit on a pillow to raise your seating level if you need to.
You should also be sure you are using a good sitting posture without leaning down or slouching over.
Wearing supportive shoes and avoiding shoes with broken arches will also take the pressure off of your knees.
Bad shoes can put an abnormal force and wear on your knees.
Dont sit for too long without moving because that can stiffen your joints.
Secret #4: Home Remedies
Before MRIs and over-the-counter pain relievers, people relied on a variety of home remedies for sciatica pain. While these wont fix the problem causing the pain, they can provide temporary relief. Some of the more successful home remedies include:
- Alternating hot and cold compresses to the lower back
- Massaging a mixture of ginger essential oil to equal part of coconut or olive oil into the lower back.
- Drink two or three cups of valerian or chamomile tea to stop muscle spasms.
- Soaking in a bath with apple cider vinegar and Epsom salts.
- Rub a cream containing at least 0.025% capsaicin on the affected area.
- Try a tincture called Harshiangar, which contains anti-inflammatory and analgesic compounds. This remedy comes to us from Ayurvedic medicine and can be found in many Indian specialty stores.
Herbal, natural anti-inflammatories are also recommended home remedies for sciatica pain. You can find more information on these in secret #7.
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How To Identify The Culprit And Which Drugs Injections And Habits Will Bring You The Most Relief
by Alison Gwinn, AARP, September 20, 2019| 0
En español | Oh, my aching knees! If that’s your daily refrain, whether you’re walking the dog, climbing stairs or just sleeping, you’re not alone.
For many, the culprit behind that nagging soreness is osteoarthritis, which affects an estimated 31 million Americans quite often, in this particular joint according to the Arthritis Association.
But there are other common causes of knee pain, stemming from the fact that knees are our largest, most complex joints. Knee joints allow you to stand up straight, walk stairs and get up and down from sitting, says Daniel Saris, an orthopedic surgeon at the Mayo Clinic and professor of orthopedic surgery at the Mayo Medical School. But they are also the most difficult joint because they’re not stable. Hip joints and ankles are both pretty stable by themselves, but the knee is just three bones trying to be good friends, and they need muscles and ligaments for stability.”
Knee pain is not to be taken lightly. A Japanese study, published last year in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, found a link between the onset of knee pain in people 65 or older and depression. And a recent study from the University of North Carolina School of Medicine Thurston Arthritis Research Center and Harvard’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital found that knee pain in men and women over age 45 correlated with higher rates of death.
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How A Weak Gluteus Medius Contributes To Knee Pain During Exercise
The gluteus medius is one of the lesser known glute muscles but plays a vital role in key movements at the hip.And when the gluteus medius is weak, youre unable to properly control your femur. As a result it slightly rotates inward to compensate; – which happens anytime you stand, walk, or perform lower body exercises like the squat for example….And this inward rotation creates excessive stress on the knees in different areas, hence creating the knee pain you might be feeling.And not only do multiplestudies agree with this and show a strong positive correlation between a weak gluteus medius and resulting knee pain…But studies ALSO indicate that strengthening a weak gluteus medius seems to drastically reduce knee pain and joint loading.With one 2011 study by Dolak and colleagues demonstrating a 43% reduction in knee pain in just 4 weeks after incorporating gluteus medius strengthening exercises: