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What Exercise Is Best For Sore Knees

Get Both An Upper And Lower Body Workout

10 Best Knee Pain Exercises Ever Created (Stretches & Strengthening)

An elliptical machine with handles is one of the few cardio machines that can provide you with both an upper- and lower-body workout. The key to maximizing the upper-body benefits is to distribute your weight and resistance evenly. In other words, pump your arms just as fast as youre moving your legs.

When done correctly, the elliptical can target your glutes, hamstrings, quads, chest, back, biceps, triceps, and core muscles.

Is It Safe For Me To Exercise

Are you worried that working out could cause more knee damage or pain? As long as your doctor says its OK, the best thing you can do is to strengthen the muscles that support your knee and keep them flexible. Start slowly, and build up over time. Talk to your doctor about which specific exercises are good for you.

Aubrey Bailey Pt Dpt Cf

Exercising is not always easy if you have bad knees. Running and other high-impact exercises can be counterproductive if you have ever had a knee injury or are coming off knee surgery. High-impact exercises can pound on your joints this is something you should avoid at all costs. The best exercise equipment for bad knees is low-impact machines that can help you achieve your fitness goals, without aggravating old injuries.

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How Exercise Helps Knee Arthritis

Exercise programs for arthritis that include strength and aerobic exercise can help reduce symptoms, improve joint motion and function, enhance balance, and control body weight. With knee OA, strength training exercises are particularly important, adds Lauren Shroyer, MS, director of product development at the American Council on Exercise.

Thats because as you age, balance can decline for multiple reasons arthritis in your knee can affect balance as well. Strength exercises help stabilize your knee and retain that balance for longer periods of time. Plus, your body relies on muscles to help motor joints, adds Dr. Johnson. For the knee, thats the quadriceps in the front of the thigh and hamstrings in the back.

You cant cure arthritis or make it go away, says Dr. Johnson. But if you strengthen the muscles that support and stabilize the knee, you can take some of the stress load of weight-bearing or walking off a joint thats worn out and weakened from arthritis, and place it on the stronger muscle.

Medicine Ball Knee Lifts

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Verywell / Ben Goldstein

For some variety, it’s great to add a new tool to the mix. Grab your medicine ball. Around 4 to 8 pounds is a good range.

  • Hold it in both hands and march, like you did with the exercise ball.
  • Start with the medicine ball straight up and bring the right knee up, touching it with the medicine ball.
  • Lower and repeat with the left knee, alternating sides for 60 seconds.
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    What Not To Do:

    • Do not lock the knees during this exercise. The knees should remain slightly bent.
    • Do not allow any part of the stepping foot to hang off the stool or platform.
    • People who have issues with balance should not perform this exercise.

    Muscles involved: Quadriceps, hamstrings, and gluteal muscles.

  • Use two high-backed, stable chairs, placing one on either side of the body with the chair backs next to the arms. Place a hand on the back of each chair for balance.
  • Lift right leg about 12 inches from the ground. All weight should be on the left leg.
  • Slowly bend down a few inches, pushing weight onto the heel of supporting leg.
  • Hold for 35 seconds.
  • Slowly straighten up.
  • There are many different ways to stretch the hamstrings in the back of the legs. One is through traditional toe touching.

    • With the feet close together, slowly bend over at the hips and extend the arms downward. Keep the legs straight but do not lock the knees.
    • Reach the fingers to the top of the toes and hold for 30 seconds.
    • Initially, it may not be possible to reach the toes. In this case, try to get the fingers as close as possible to the toes without causing pain.

    What not to do:

    • Do not use a bouncing motion. Hold the body still.

    How Do You Rehab A Knee Injury

    Water-based activities are the best way to begin your rehabilitation following a serious knee injury. The buoyancy of the water supports your weight and take the pressure off your injured joints.

    It will also burn calories while keeping your body at a cooler temperature which makes it quite comfortable especially after a long period without physical activity.

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    Best And Worst Leg Exercises For Bad Knees

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    Folks with bad knees cant just do any leg exercise.

    Doing the wrong leg exercises will put extra strain on the knees and increase knee pain.A Complete List Of Bodyweight Leg Exercises , FocusFitness

    The exercises Im about to share with you arent for treating knee pain theyre low-impact exercises which wont make your knee problem worse. That said, these exercises are known to strengthen the knees and even reduce pain.

    Note that all knee problems are not the same some are more severe than others. So listen to your body and stick to exercises youre comfortable with. The worst thing you can do is to train through pain. Stop whenever you feel unusual sharp pain.

    In this article, I will share exercises that can strengthen your hamstrings, quadriceps, glutes and calf muscles.

    Best Exercises To Strengthen Knees

    Sore Knees Workout | 8 Exercises That WON’T HURT Your KNEES

    The following exercises will focus on strengthening these knee-supporting muscles so you can take pressure off your knee joints and make sure theyre aligning properly.

    Try to perform these exercises every other day for the best results.

    1. Straight Leg Raises

    Straight leg raises help you work the front of your quadriceps, without having to bend your knees. They are especially great for when any type of bending or load on your knees is bothering you.

    The reason you want to strengthen the quadriceps muscle is because it helps absorb shock before it reaches the knee joint. This will lessen the strain on your knees and help reduce pain and friction.

  • Begin lying flat on your back, one leg bent with the other extended straight in front of you, along the floor.
  • Flex your foot and pull your toes toward you, keeping your knee straight.
  • Lift your foot roughly six inches off the floor, hold for 3-5 seconds, then lower.
  • Repeat for 10 to 20 reps.
  • Progression: Once your knees feel stronger, you can try adding weight in the form of a shoe or ankle weight.

    2. Glute Bridges

    The glute bridge is an amazing exercise that works the entire lower half of the body, including the core. Strengthening the glutes, hamstrings, quads, and core all help to relieve pressure off the knee joints, and improve knee stabilization during your workouts.

  • Begin lying on the floor with your legs bent and feet in line with your hips.
  • Lower to just above the floor and repeat for 10 to 15 reps.
  • 3. Knee Marches

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    How To Rehab Your Bad Knees

    There is plenty of different information circulating in order to get you up and moving in good time following a severe knee injury.

    A physical therapist is the best person to see when it is time to get moving again once a significant period of immobilization has been reached.

    This is crucial in most cases and will give the knee joint enough time to rest and physically heal before getting back into a routine of exercise and physical activity.

    Some recommended forms of exercise to get patients up and moving again after a knee injury include water-based activities, such as water aerobics and swimming, walking, and low-impact circuits.

    Water activities take a lot of the pressure off the knee due to the buoyancy of the water. this can often do no end of good when people are recovering from serious knee injuries.

    Swimming and water aerobics are also great for burning large amounts of calories while keeping the body at a cooler temperature.

    These are some of the best rehab exercises for knee injuries and should be considered upon recommendation from a medical professional.

    It may take anywhere from six weeks to many months for the knee to fully heal, but this does not mean that your health has to suffer.

    Staying active and participating in cardiovascular exercise is an important way to stay active and keep your mind and body in check after what can often be a long period of being inactive.

    Straight Leg Kicks With A Medicine Ball

    Verywell / Ben Goldstein

    Keeping your medicine ball, we’ll pick up the intensity with some long lever moves.

  • Take the medicine ball straight up as you step back slightly with the right leg. The front knee should be slightly bent.
  • From this position, kick the right leg forward as you bring the med ball down towards the toes.
  • Repeat for 30 seconds and switch to the other side.
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    Get Stronger Using Your Own Body

    As you can see from the exercises to strengthen knees above, you dont need a lot of fancy equipment in order to get fitter. Sometimes all you need is your own body.

    Thats why I created this downloadable Bodyweight Workout!

    This 6-exercise circuit will help you burn more fat while getting stronger. It includes an instructional video, workout tracker, and follow-along audio.

    A $29 value its yours FREE! Just click the image below to get it now.

    Exercise And Knee Pain

    Exercises for Bad Knees

    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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    Healing Exercises For Knee Pain

    The knee, made up of bones, tendons, cartilage, and ligaments, is the largest joint in the body. It can also be the source of a lot of discomfort.

    A lot of people wonder if its a good idea to exercise if they have knee pain. They think it might put unnecessary stress on their knees. The truth is, not exercising could lead to more pain and weaker knees.

    These exercises for knee pain will put you on the path to recovery! So give a few of them a try!

    Living with chronic knee pain is difficult. If youve done the exercises and are thinking about the next steps you want to take on your journey to recovery, consider consulting a professional.

    Maintain Fitness After Injury

    If youre nursing an injury and cant participate in your regular physical activities, working out on an elliptical can be a great way to build or maintain your fitness. Since its a low-impact exercise, it puts a lot less stress on your joints than high-impact workouts, like running, jogging, or jumping.

    Working out on an elliptical after an injury may help you regain full range of motion. It can also help strengthen your muscles and joints, while taking the stress off of the injured area.

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    Move Your Favorite Workout Class Into The Pool

    Many people use group fitness classes as a way to stay active. Water aerobics is a great option that will go easy on your knees but keep your workouts social. Exercising in the water will reduce the impact on your knees and ensure an invigorating aerobic workout. Most major gyms or workout facilities offer a water aerobics alternative.

    Allows For Interval Training

    10 Best Knee Pain Strengthening Exercises Ask Doctor Jo

    Interval training allows you to alternate short bursts of intense exercise with longer intervals of less intense exercise. This type of training can help you burn more calories in less time, and also elevate your cardio fitness.

    Stationary bikes allow for varied resistance levels, so you can exercise at low, medium, or high intensities. This makes it ideal for an interval training workout.

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    Knee Exercise: Quadricep Stretch

    Stretches the front of your thigh

    • Stand behind a sturdy chair or next to a wall and hold on for balance.
    • Bend one knee and bring your heel up toward your buttock.
    • Grasp your ankle with your hand and gently pull your heel closer to your body.
    • Hold the stretch for 30 to 60 seconds.
    • Repeat with the opposite leg then repeat the sequence one or two more times.

    Tip: Dont arch or twist your back while stretching.

    What Else Might I Do

    During your sessions, your therapist may also use:

    Heat and ice packs. Ice calms inflammation. Heat warms up your muscles so they move better. Both can help with pain.

    Massage. Keep in mind that a massage on areas that are injured, sore, or hurt may not feel relaxing. But your therapist will take great care to make sure itâs safe and helpful for you. If you get one by someone other than them, tell that professional about your pain before your session starts.

    TENS and ultrasound. Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, or TENS, uses a device to send a low-voltage electric current to the skin over the area where you have pain. Ultrasound sends sound waves to the areas that hurt. Both may offer relief by blocking the pain messages that go to your brain.

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    It Band Foam Roller Stretch

    How To :

    • This best exercise for knee pain helps relax your quads as they tighten up from sitting too much.
    • Lie down with your front facing down and rest your right leg quad on the foam roller while you support your upper body with your arms.
    • Place majority of your body weight on your right leg and roll up through the thighs on the band foam roller.
    • For a more effective stretch, roll your leg from side to side as you focus pressure on the tighter spots of your muscle. Hold for 8-10 breaths.
    • Switch the legs and hold for 8-10 breaths.

    Downward Dog Calf Stretch

    The best exercise to alleviate knee pain

    When it comes to a basic calf stretch the Downward Dog is the leader. A classic yoga pose, it helps stretch your calf muscles.

  • Position your body in a high plank so that your hands are located directly beneath your shoulders.
  • You will want to shift your weight so that your butt arches upwards towards the ceiling and forms an inverted V with your body.
  • Press your heels into the ground so your calf muscles stretch while maintaining your V form.
  • Bend your knees slightly and press your heels down to the ground to pull your calf muscles.
  • Repeat five times.
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    How Does Physical Therapy Treat Pain

    Physical therapists are experts not only in treating pain, but also its source. Yours will look for areas of weakness or stiffness that may be adding stress to the places that hurt. And they will treat those areas with certain exercises to ease pain and help you move better.

    In a physical therapy session, you may do a mix of:

    Low-impact aerobic training. These workouts will rev up your heart rate and still take it easy on your joints. For instance, you might walk fast or use a stationary bike to warm up, instead of running, before you do your strengthening exercises.

    Strengthening exercises. You might use machines at your physical therapistâs office, resistance bands, or your own body weight . You may work on your core muscles , as well as other parts of your body.

    Pain relief exercises. These moves target areas where you have pain, so you’re stronger and more flexible — which should make it easier to live your life.

    Stretching. This will be gentle, and your therapist will make sure that you’re warmed up and you donât stretch too far.

    Your physical therapist may prescribe exercises for you to do at home.

    Yoga For Inner Knee Pain

    Practicing yoga is a great way to boost flexibility, range of motion, strength, and a general sense of well-being all at once. Since yoga poses often require coordination and strength of multiple muscles groups, it is a great way to address knee health, prevent knee injuries, and increase full body health all at once.

    You can attend a local yoga class, find online yoga classes, or simply add a few poses that target the lower legs to your stretching routine. Try childs pose, cat-cow, and a butterfly stretch to start.

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    What Are The Injuries That Can Cause Bad Knees

    Whether from aging, accidents, or repeated sports injuries, the list of injuries that can occur to the knee isnt long. However, if youre suffering from one or more of them, the pain can be overwhelming and debilitating. Those injuries include:

    • Iliotibial band syndrome: The iliotibial band is a ligament that attached the knee to the thigh. This ligament can become extremely tight and inflamed and cause significant pain.
    • Meniscus tears: The meniscus is a softer tissue that cushions the knee joint. When torn , the pain can be excruciating.
    • Patellofemoral pain syndrome: Pain in the front of the knee caused by the breakdown of cartilage between the kneecap and the patella.

    If youre suffering from one or more of these knee problems, one of the best things you can do is keep moving. If you live a very sedentary lifestyle, get up and get moving. That includes exercising, although, with bad knees, some exercises are better than others.

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