Do your bad knees interfere with exercise? Certain knee exercises help strengthen your knees, preventing pain. Here's a knee workout routine to try!
Do you suffer from knee pain?
Well, you're not alone. About 100 million Americans suffer from chronic pain, with knee pain being the second most common cause of chronic pain.
Unfortunately, many people think that knee pain is something they simply must live with and that there's nothing they can do to alleviate it.
But, this is far from the truth!
And no, we're not talking about big, expensive surgeries. There are plenty of simple, everyday things you can do to alleviate your knee pain. One of the best things to do is to perform knee exercises that help alleviate your pain and strengthen your knee.
What exercises should you be doing?
Read on to learn about the top knee exercises you need to try.
Before you attempt to do any sort of knee exercises, it's always very important to warm up. If you don't warm up, you put yourself at risk for further injury.
Your warm-up can be something as simple as riding a stationary bike for a few months, walking on the treadmill or doing plyometric movements.
Once you've warmed up, you can jump into your knee exercises.
Best Knee Exercises
Strengthening your knee is all about strengthening the other parts of your leg. When the other parts of your leg are stronger, they can work together to make your knee stronger.
Therefore, you will notice a lot of these exercises will involve not only working your knee, but also your glutes, quads, hamstrings, and other parts of your leg. Let's dive in.
1. Lateral Band Walk
In order to perform the later band walk, you just need a resistance band. Most gyms carry resistance bands, but if you're not a gym member, you can easily buy one at the store.
Resistance bands are very inexpensive, and there are so many exercises you can do with them, so they're definitely worth the investment.
For a lateral band walk, you will place the resistance band around your ankles. When tying the band, tie it tight enough so you have to use force to lunge to the side, but not so much that you feel like the band will snap.
Then, bend down in a half squat position, keep your weight in your heels, and step sideways with one foot. Then, slowly follow with the other foot. Do about 15 steps to one side, and then walk back in the other direction, so the foot that was following is now leading. Repeat 2 to 3 times.
For an additional challenge, you can place an additional band around your quads. And, you can also do the same exercise, except this time walk forwards and backward.
Ready to look like a superhero?
For the Supermans, you will get down on your mat and lie on your stomach. Stretch your arms out in front of you, and then lift your left arm and right leg simultaneously. Pause for a second while in the air, then repeat on the other side.
You will feel this move in your legs, arms, and abs.
3. Quad Clench
If you suffered a serious knee injury and are just starting to recover from it, this move is perfect for you.
Lie on your back, with your legs stretched straight out in front of you. Then, clench your quadriceps by tightening your muscles and ligaments together. If your knees move slightly up, that means you're doing it right. Hold the clench for a few seconds, and then release it.
This is a move that you can do consistently throughout the day to help relieve knee pain and strengthen your legs. Do it about 10 to 20 times, every 3 or 4 hours or so.
If your knee hurts to the point where you cannot fully straighten it out, place a rolled up towel underneath your ankle to give it some elevation. Make sure to perform the exercise gently and slowly so you're not overstraining anything.
4. Knee Marching
Here's another one that's great if you're still in the beginning stages of recovery.
Sit on a chair with your feet on the ground in front of you. Then, lift one leg up, hold it for about a second, and then gently lower it down. Repeat on the other leg. Do this for a couple minutes for a few times a day.
As you start to build up more strength in your knee, you can place weights on your quadriceps for an extra challenge.
5. Butt Kicks
Butt kicks are a super simple exercise that will help improve the flexibility of your knees and your circulation.
Lie flat on your stomach, with your toes flexed and your legs extended. Your arms should be folded and placed below your chin. Then, lift your feet up, bringing them close to your buttocks without overstraining them. Hold them there for two seconds, and then lower them back down again.
You can do these for a couple minutes, several times a day.
6. Leg Dips
Leg dips are another great exercise that incorporates the whole body.
In order to perform a leg dip, sit on your butt with your feet flat on the floor and your knees flexed. Then, place your hands behind you with your fingers pointed toward your body and your palms flat on the floor.
Straighten one leg, and then use your arms to push your butt off the ground and hips in the air. Hold for a couple seconds, and then lower yourself back down.
Do 10 to 15 on one side, and then do 10 to 15 on the other side.
7. Knee Stabilization
This is a great move to strengthen every part of your leg.
For this move, grab a chair and stand behind it with your feet flat on the floor. Then, lift one foot off the floor, like you're going to do high knees. Hold your leg in the air for a couple seconds, then, move it back, almost like you're kicking the air behind you. Finally, bring your leg back to the start position and lower it back down.
You can do this exercise 10 times on each side, twice a day.
Ready to Tackle These Knee Exercises?
As you can see, there are a lot of simple knee exercises you can do to strengthen and alleviate pain from your knee.
If you have any questions about how to perform any of these exercises, please drop us a comment below.
And, if you're looking to learn more about knee pain, be sure to check out this page.