Advertising
Advertising

Can’t Wait To Eliminate Knee Pain? Try These 8 Exercises To Strengthen Your Knees

Can’t Wait To Eliminate Knee Pain? Try These 8 Exercises To Strengthen Your Knees

We can’t deny that our knees are one of the most important parts of our bodies. Whether you play football, swim, do the housework or drive a car, your knees are essentially the ones bringing your forward, getting you to places and helping you get things done. Knee pains are never to be trifled with.

Muscle Groups Supporting Our Joints

knee_anatomy

    As you can see from the illustration above, our knees are intricately structured with various ligaments, muscles, and bones. With ligaments, you might have heard once or twice about the Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) and how it has ended the careers of many sportsman and women because it is essential for normal knee function.

    Just as important as our knee ligaments are the supporting muscle groups surrounding the joints. Simply by strengthening your supporting muscle groups, you’ll strengthen your knees and ligaments supported by them.

    Take note that the following 8 exercises involve low impact movements and are specially chosen with the purpose of strengthening and restoring balance to the support muscle groups, resulting in strong knees with stability.

    1. Seated Straight Leg Raises

    Seated leg raises are one of the easiest knee strengthening exercises you can do at the comfort of your own work desk. Most importantly, it works the quadriceps which is the large front muscle of the thigh.

    two_chairs

      Instructions:

      Step One: Sit on a chair with one leg on another

      Step Two: Simply lift one leg and straighten for 5-10 seconds

      Advertising

      Step Three: Slowly lower down your leg onto the other chair and repeat for 5 – 10 times for each leg

      2. Seated Bent Leg Raise

      skimble-workout-trainer-exercise-seated-leg-lifts-3_iphone-1

        The seated bent leg raise is similar to the seated straight leg raise but this time, bent your leg in a 45 degree angle and hold it there for about 30 seconds. Repeat for 4 repetitions for each leg. Seated bent leg raises are best for the hip flexors which is the muscle greatly involved in supporting walking, running and standing.

        3. Abductor Raises

        You would want to take note that this exercise has been recorded by doctors in the Journal of Romanian Sports Medicine Society to help patients with knee pains, drastically. The abductor raises is an exercise that helps strengthen your abductor muscle groups such as buttocks and lateral hip region.

        side_hip_abduction

          Instructions:

          Step One: Lie on side with arm supporting your head

          Step Two: Straighten both legs out, you can bend lower leg slightly to support body

          Step Three: Lift straightened upper leg up and hold for 5-10 seconds. Do 10-12 repetitions per leg

          4. Hamstring Curls

          When experiencing knee pains, you won’t quite exactly know where the pain is. Sometimes, it could even occur at the back of the knee. To reduce the pain, hamstring curls is a great exercise to keep those thighs toned and to strengthen those hamstrings.

          Advertising

          trail-leg-curl-400x400

            Instructions:

            Step One: Stand against a pole or a chair

            Step Two: Lift your leg up towards your buttock, keeping your foot pointing to the ground

            Step Three: Hold your foot in the position for 5 – 10 seconds

            Step Four: Repeat for 15 repitions per leg

            5. Step Up

            The step up is an overall strengthening exercise for your entire lower body especially the supporting muscles for your knees. However, do note that if you experience discomfort during the step up exercise, lower the height of the step.

            step-up

              Instructions:

              Step One: Just like climbing stairs, put one foot up the step

              Advertising

              Step Two: Lift yourself to place the other foot up, using the foot to support yourself while lowering the other

              Step Three: Repeat for 1 minute before changing to the other foot to step up first

              6. Spinning

              Unlike slow jogging, spinning on a stationary bike doesn’t put much impact on your knees and it helps strengthen your ligaments and surrounding muscles around your knee.

              sole-fitness-sb700-exercise-bike

                Instructions:

                Spin 10 minutes every day with light resistance

                7. Short Arcs

                Short arcs are the quintessential exercise for knee strengthening, widely used for rehabilitation after knee surgery or injury.

                maxresdefault

                  Instructions:

                  Step One: Lay on your back

                  Advertising

                  Step Two: Place a foam roller or a ball under the knee

                  Step Three: Straighten your knee and hold the position for 3-5 seconds. Repeat 10 -15 times per leg

                  8. Seated Knee Marching

                  When you strengthen the muscles around your knees, you basically add more stability and mobility to your knees. With the seated knee marching exercise you can strengthen the quadriceps.

                  seated-knee-marching

                    Instructions:

                    Step One: Sit on a Chair with back straight

                    Step Two: Lift one knee up slowly and slowly lower it

                    Step Three: Repeat with other knee and coninue for one minute

                    More by this author

                    Lim Kairen

                    Content Writer

                    If You Want To Be Successful In Life, You Shouldn’t Say These 7 Phrases Easily Here Is What Your Farts Reveal About Your Digestive Health Everyone Is Talented In Their Own Way: The 9 Types Of Intelligence You Should Know Psychologists Explain How Boring Buildings Are Harmful To Our Mental Health Upgrade Your Water: 6 Things To Add To Water For Better Digestive Health

                    Trending in Exercise

                    1 8 Yoga Poses to Help You Achieve Strong and Toned Inner Thighs 2 3 Home Exercises To Fix Your Rounded Shoulders In One Month 3 Workout Every Day: Thursday Music Playlist 4 Cut down on drinking! Time for a post-holiday detox 5 How To Get A Six-Pack In One Month

                    Read Next

                    Advertising
                    Advertising
                    Advertising

                    Last Updated on March 2, 2021

                    Why You Should Keep a Fitness Journal to Jumpstart Weight Loss

                    Why You Should Keep a Fitness Journal to Jumpstart Weight Loss

                    As you get started on a fitness journey, you’ve probably looked up the importance of a good exercise regimen, a healthy diet, and a more active lifestyle. What you probably haven’t heard much about is the importance of keeping a fitness journal to keep yourself on track.

                    Here is how to get started with a fitness journal and the benefits it will bring.

                    How to Start a Fitness Journal

                    Starting a fitness journal is simple and easy. You either buy a pre-organized fitness motivation journal or a blank notebook if you are interested in designing your own layout.

                    As you get started with your fitness journal, try to include the following.

                    Fitness Goals

                    Before you even begin to track your workouts, it’s important to clarify what your fitness goals[1] are and the deadline you plan to reach them by. Your goals can include changes in your diet, your exercise routine, or your weight.

                    Workout Statistics

                    Each time you do a daily workout, write down the date, day of the week, start/end times, the exercises you completed, and the reps of each. This can be altered depending on your specific workout. For example, if you’re a runner, you can write down your average speed while running, your peak heart rate, and your total distance traveled.

                    Body Metrics

                    In order to track your progress, you’ll need to know specific body measurements. You can include your weight, BMI, length measurements, and calories consumed each day. Then, go back and measure these at least once a month to see how close you are to achieving your fitness goals.

                    Diet and Sleep Info

                    Your eating and sleeping habits are just as important as your workouts when it comes to fitness. As an added element in your fitness planner, you can keep track of what you eat, your water intake, how long you sleep, and your sleep quality. This can help you identify patterns that can help you work out more effectively.

                    Advertising

                    Benefits of Keeping a Fitness Journal

                    1. The Key to Celebration

                    “Progress equals happiness.” -Tony Robbins

                    One of the most encouraging acts you can do in your life is to track your progress. If you’ve set goals, it’s absolutely crucial for you to know if you’re moving any closer.

                    As Tony Robbins, a top-notch motivational speaker and author, said: Progress is happiness. It’s one thing to crave progress and another thing to start measuring it. That’s when the workout journal comes in handy.

                    When you’re able to see just how far you’ve come by looking back in your fitness journal, you’ll feel more motivated to keep moving forward.

                    2. Better Guidance

                    “If one does not know to which port one is sailing, no wind is favorable.” -Lucius Annaeus Seneca

                    Imagine if a coach could analyze your whole progress, your weaknesses, and your strengths in less than 5 minutes.

                    If you have paid to be coached by a professional in the fitness industry, why not make his/her life and your progress easier? If your trainer knows where you’ve been struggling, and where you’ve been excelling, s/he will know how to guide you toward better results.

                    3. Reduce Reliance on Willpower

                    The last thing we all want is to put more stress on our plates. Why should we consciously note down our progress and add an extra task?

                    Advertising

                    A workout book can actually lessen the willpower that we need to get to the gym. The fitness journal takes the decision weight off our shoulders that is needed to start the task.

                    When you plan your workouts in advance through your journal, your mind will already have the habit embedded in your routine.

                    You can also check out Lifehack’s Fast-Track Class: No More Procrastination. This can help you learn to stop procrastinating and get to the gym when it’s time.

                    4. Helps You Face the Truth

                    A fitness journal will help you analyze what you’ve really been doing to achieve your fitness goals.

                    Some people think they simply have “bad genetics,” yet when they look at what they’ve really been doing through the fitness journal, they may see that their eating and exercise habits haven’t gone in the right direction. This can help eliminate excuses and get you moving on a better path.

                    5. Creates Accountability

                    By looking at our past achievements, we can set the goal to achieve more. A fitness journal can foster our ambition by keeping us accountable for what we did yesterday and what we plan to do tomorrow.

                    6. Recognize Patterns

                    Have you ever wondered why you feel a lack of motivation one day and then feel like exercising for two hours on another? A fitness journal can help you see patterns in your behaviors. In the end, what gets measured gets managed.

                    7. Experience Joy of Task Completion

                    You know that feeling when you cross off something on your to-do list? It’s possible to replicate that same feeling after going to the gym with your fitness journal.

                    Advertising

                    If we write down the results of our training, we get a dopamine rush. It makes us feel that we’re in control of our destiny.

                    8. Prevent Excuses

                    If you’ve noticed that you haven’t made any progress recently, look at your fitness journal. It’s most likely not your genetics.

                    If we write our progress down, we can see what works and what doesn’t, which can help prevent excuses.

                    9. Minimize Injuries

                    Do you feel a sting after doing shoulder exercises? Make a note in your fitness journal.

                    Before starting the next workout, go through the old workout and act accordingly. Often, injuries accumulate after multiple workout sessions. We can minimize the occurrence of injuries by writing it down in our journal and noting what isn’t working for our bodies.

                    10. Look and Feel Like a Pro

                    If you have a fitness journal to track your progress, you’ll feel more dedicated to your workouts overall. Looking and acting like a professional becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

                    11. Determine the Value of Your Time

                    Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion. -Parkinson’s Law

                    Parkinson’s Law also applies to your fitness results. If you don’t give your workout a maximum duration, you may not end up using your workout time wisely.

                    Advertising

                    Pre-determine the sets, reps, and exercises that you want to do beforehand to make the most of your time.

                    12. Focus on You

                    While I’m a huge believer in motivation through a competitive spirit and external factors, in the end, this journey is about becoming a better you—a healthier, faster, stronger and better person altogether.

                    The fitness journal can help you keep your focus on where it should be—on you. In the end, all the notes that you take are focused on your progress and your decisions.

                    Final Thoughts

                    The reason most people don’t have a fitness journal is that they assume it’s not worth it. Nothing could be further from the truth.

                    There are plenty of reasons to follow a fitness journal. From creating motivation, to helping you stay on track, to being a facilitator for personal growth, having a fitness journal is an absolute necessity if you’re serious about reaching your fitness goals.

                    In the end, having a fitness journal for goal setting can really make all the difference for your physical and mental health.

                    More on Reaching Your Fitness Goals

                    Featured photo credit: dylan nolte via unsplash.com

                    Reference

                    Read Next