Knee pain causes can include osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, bursitis and muscle or tendon injury. Taking simple pain relief can help. In addition, as with any type of joint pain, knee pain may benefit from targeted exercises. Strengthening the muscles around the knee can help with stability, flexibility and mobility. So, no matter what causes your knee pain, if your doctor agrees, here are some exercises that can help relieve the symptoms.
Before and After Exercise
Warm up your muscles before undertaking any type of exercise and remember to stretch afterwards. Getting into a regular routine of warming up and stretching will help reduce the risk of injury and stiffness.
Keeping fit and healthy with a good diet and regular exercise will benefit your knee by helping you to maintain a suitable weight, reducing the strain on your knee joint. Choose low-impact exercises such as swimming, aqua aerobics, cycling and walking and avoid high impact sport such as road running.
All these exercises can be performed at home, with no need for a gym. Perform all the exercises slowly and gradually increase the number of repetitions.
- Straight Leg Raising: Lie on your back with one knee bent. Raise the straight leg as far as you can. Repeat 10 times before swapping legs. This is a good workout for your quadriceps and puts little strain on your knee joint. You can then lie on your front and perform straight leg raises, this time lifting your legs one at a time, behind and above you. This works on your hamstrings. You could then try lying on one side, supporting your head with your hand. Keep the lower leg bent at the knee and raise the free leg up and down gently. Repeat on the other side.
- Curls: This exercise is great for your hamstrings. Stand straight supported by a chair. Take turns to lift one leg at a time behind you, by bending your knee. You can also do this exercise lying flat on the ground on your belly, bringing your heel up as close as you can to your backside.
- Calf strengthening: holding on to a chair for support, stand up slowly onto your toes and then slowly return to standing flat on your feet. Repeat.
- Stepping: For this exercise simply stand at the bottom of stairs or a set of steps. Holding onto rails or bannisters for support if needed, step up and down making sure that you have two feet placed on the upper step before stepping down again, finishing the repetition with two feet placed together at the bottom. Repeat.
These exercises are designed to help ease knee pain. If you find that your pain becomes worse or you start experiencing pain in a new area of your body, stop and consult a doctor. You also may find it helpful to speak to a physiotherapist or specialist medical practitioner for advice on appropriate exercises to help with your knee pain.
About Ramsay Health Care
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At Ramsay you won’t have to wait for an appointment for your knee replacement. Your treatment may be covered by medical insurance and self-pay packages are available on request. We have first class facilities and all self-funding and most privately insured patients can enjoy our Private Patient Pledge offering exclusive benefits including superb food, a relaxing environment, priority access and appointments to suit your lifestyle. Our aim is to help you feel like a guest as well as a patient.
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