“Can I ever strengthen my knees and gain knee flexibility like before?”
This one question haunts people with knee pain. Yes, of course! You can make you knees stronger and it is actually important to strengthen your knees. Several exercises help build stronger knees and gain knee stabilization. Read through to learn about effective Knee Strengthening Exercises and keep yourself fit.
First of all, it is important to strengthen your muscles that support your knees to keep them flexible. Before you include any of these workouts in your routine, take doctor’s approval to be sure whether the exercises can be included and help in treating the knee pain. Once you get your doctor’s nod, start slow and gradually build.
This article highlights on a few simple, yet effective exercises for strengthening the knees. Ensure to get your body warmed up before you begin with any exercises. Try any of these warm-ups:
- Riding a stationary bike for 5 minutes.
- Taking a brisk 2-minute walk.
- Pumping your arms.
- Around 15-20 wall push-ups and calf raises.
All of these warm-ups help get maximum out of your workout. They make your body ready stretch and lessen the risks of injuries.
Best Knee Strengthening Exercises:
1. Simple Knee Stretching:
Start with simple knee strengthening exercise like straight leg raise. This is a simple strengthening exercise for the muscles in the front of the thigh, called quadriceps. This exercise does not exert more strain on the knee.
How To Do It:
- Lie on a flat surface or the floor, on your back.
- Bend one knee and place your foot flat on the floor.
- Raise the other leg straight, till the height of the opposite knee.
- Repeat on both the legs for 10-15 times.
2. Ankle Band Distractions:
Rigid and stiff ankles may cause discomfort and may lead to injuries. Band distractions can help floss stubborn joints, enhancing motion, reducing knee pain, and getting the nutrients into cartilage.
How To Do It:
- Loop one end of a band to a sturdy base.
- Loop another end around your ankle.
- Put the leg with the band in front of the leg without the band.
- Spread the banded leg forward until you feel the tension and as far as you are comfortable.
- Put the banded foot on the ground and rotate the ankle side to side as well as back and forth.
- Repeat for 45 seconds and switch between the knees.
3. Wall Quad Stretch:
This simple stretch hits the front of the ankles, foot, shins, knees, and quads. You can do this exercise about anywhere.
How To Do It:
- Stand facing away from the wall in the bottom of a lunge position.
- Put the toes of your back foot up against the wall.
- Your back knee serves as the axis point.
- The closer the back knee is to the wall the more of a stretch there will be through the foot, ankle and quads.
- If you want to stretch the hip flexors out, push your hips forward.
- As an other advanced move, keep your feet on the floor.
- Stand with your back against a wall.
- Put your feet about shoulder-width apart.
- Bend your knees slowly and keep your pelvis and the back against the wall.
- Hold on for 10 seconds.
- Repeat one both the knees and try holding the sitting position for more seconds every time.
Note: Do not bend the knee too deeply. Change the position slowly if you feel some discomfort or pressure on knees, change your position. This is one of the best knee exercise for runners.
4. The Classic Rehab Exercise
The terminal knee extension serves as a low impact quad activator. The workout can get the blood flow into the knee. Moreover, the quad prepares lower body for training.
How To Do It:
- Loop an exercise band to a sturdy base.
- Put one leg into the band and let the band be just above the top of the knee.
- Create some tension in the band by trying to walk out.
- Now bend and extend the knee, focusing on knee straightening and contracting the quad as hard as you can.
- Repeat 25 times on each side.
- Feel the blood rush to that area.
- As an advanced workout, place one foot on a step bench, or the lowest step on a staircase.
- Bend the knee and lower the opposite foot gradually to the floor.
- Touch your toe lightly to the floor, then rise back up.
- Repeat 10 times and switch between legs.
Too easy? Try, using a higher step, or try touching your heel instead of the toe.
5. Hamstring Flossing
The muscles in the hamstring group are semitendinosus, bicep femoris and semimembranosus all cross the knee joint. Issues in any of these muscles can cause knee pain in the posterior (rear) portion of the knee and leg.
How To Do It:
- Hold a lacrosse or tennis ball.
- Sit on a sturdy box or ledge of about mid thigh height box.
- Place the ball beneath the leg, firmly on the hamstrings.
- Applying pressure to the muscle, extend and bend the knee.
- Continue straightening and flexing the leg, while you allow the ball to go up and down the back of the leg.
- One minute on each leg will your improve your knee strength, besides making your hamstrings feel better.
In conclusion, simple daily exercises help big time in strengthening the knees, improving knee flexibility, besides reducing the knee pain, if any. However, before you try out or include any of these exercises in your workout routine, consult your physician for him to assess the condition of your knees before approving.