Knees are two of the largest and most heavily used joints in the human body. It is no wonder that so many people suffer from knee pain across all ages. Bodybuilders and athletes regularly suffer from minor injuries and soreness in the knee from time to time. This article will discuss how different exercises and stretches can help you relieve knee pain and get you up and running again.
Is Exercising a Safe Option?
We get you; exercising might seem like one of the hardest things to do when suffering from this trouble. But it is also one of the best things to do to support your knee joints.
The effective combination of strengthening and stretching exercises can help relieve knee pain, improve blood circulation, improve how your knee joint moves and functions and overall improve recovery.Please consult your doctor before you do any of the below mentioned stretches or exercises. If your pain is not improving for an extended period or it intensifies while performing any activity, you should stop exercising immediately.
Stretches to Relieve Knee Pain
Incorporating daily stretching in your workout routine can immensely help ease out the pain. For example, you can use a foam roller to ease out kinks in the muscles around your knee joint. You can also perform hands-on massage to relax muscle tissues and reduce pain. Other than this, you can try out the below-mentioned stretches to help the condition.
Lie down on your back, knees straight and arms by your sides. Grab your right leg behind the thigh with both hands. Extend your leg and flex your foot to lift your right foot toward the ceiling. To feel a stretch along the back of the right thigh, straighten the leg as much as possible without locking the knee and hold. Return to the starting position and repeat the same with your left leg. Perform this 2-3 times for both legs.
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart on the floor. Bring the heel of your right knee toward your right buttock. With your right hand, reach back and grab your foot. Hold the stretch for a few seconds before lowering your foot to the floor. With your left leg, repeat the stretch. Perform this 2-3 times for both legs.
Stand facing a wall, put your hands on the wall and step back as far as you can without straining your back. Slightly bend your knees, and your toes pointed forward on both feet. Your heels should be flat. You should feel the stretch in your back legs' calves. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds before returning to your starting position. Switch legs and do it all over again. You can do this 2-3 times for each leg.
Exercises to Relieve Knee Pain
To alleviate knee pain, you'll need to perform exercises that recruit various muscles, from the hip abductors to the hamstrings and quadriceps. It's up to you how many exercises you do in each session. However, keep in mind that rushing through workouts can be detrimental. It is more important to have good form than to have volumes. Start slowly with fewer repetitions to ensure proper form. Then, as it becomes easier, add more.
Side Leg Raises
Lie down on your right side, legs straight. Raise your right forearm and place your head on your hand. Maintaining your legs straight, carefully raise your left leg toward the ceiling. Pause for a moment, then slowly return to your starting position. Finish 8-10 reps, then switch to the left side and repeat. Perform three sets of this exercise and repeat it 2-3 times a week.
Straight Leg Raises
Lay on your back and use a pillow or neck roll to support your neck. Bend one knee up so that your foot is flat and your back is neutral (not arched). Maintain a straight line of sight between your arms and your shoulders. Tighten the muscles on the top of your thigh to straighten the other leg. Lift your leg to the height of your bent knee while keeping your toes pointed up. Pause for a moment, then slowly lower your leg back to the starting position. Perform 8-10 reps of this exercise on each leg and a total of sets 2-3 times a week.
Lay on your back with your legs bent and your feet flat. Use a pillow or a neck roll to support your head. Maintain proper alignment of your knees, feet, and hips. Maintain a relaxed posture with your arms by your sides. Tighten your glutes muscles and raise your hips to the ceiling. Only elevate your hips as high as you can without causing back pain or putting too much pressure on your joints. Pause for a moment, then slowly drop your hips back to the starting position. Perform 8-10 reps of this exercise and a total of three sets 2-3 times a week.
Place your head, shoulders, back, and hips against a wall. Step both feet out about a foot away from the wall, maintaining the back and shoulders against the wall. Maintain a hip-width distance between your feet. Slowly slide your back down the wall until your body is just above a typical sitting position. Hold for 5 seconds before sliding back up to the starting position. Perform 8-10 reps of this exercise for three sets.
The Bottom Line
Incorporating these stretches and exercises can help a great deal in overcoming minor knee pain. It will help strengthen, improve the range of motion and flexibility of your knees and prevent any further injuries. A light walk can also keep the knees working better, so try and include it into your daily life. Start with a 15 min walk and you can gradually increase the time as long as your knee can take it. Read about The Major Health Benefits of Walking Every Day. The idea is not to put a strain on you but keep the flexibility with both the knees. However, it is highly recommended that you talk to your doctor or physical therapist once before starting on any workout routine to ensure the underlying cause of the knee pain.
For overall bone health, keep your calcium deficiency in check and maintain a proper nutritional intake daily. You can try to add a good multivitamin like Maximult from Epicvita which includes calcium in the ingredient list. Maximult for Men contains 100 mg of calcium and Maximult for Women contains 150 mg.
Bilodeau, K. (2021, September 1). Take control of your knee pain. Harvard Health. https://www.health.harvard.edu/pain/take-control-of-your-knee-pain
Fitzgerald, K., & Susko, A. (2013). The pain-relieving qualities of exercise in knee osteoarthritis. Open Access Rheumatology: Research and Reviews, 81. https://doi.org/10.2147/oarrr.s53974
Gallo, P. M. (2020). Resistance Exercise and Knee Osteoarthritis. Journal of Clinical Exercise Physiology, 9(2), 89–90. https://doi.org/10.31189/2165-7629-9.2.89