6 Best Exercises to Eliminate your Knee Pain
Knee pain is one of the most common issues people seek out medical treatment to ease the discomfort and improve their function. Whether you are a 15-year-old basketball player, a 50-year-old runner, or a 75-year-old grandma, knee pain can limit our ability to do the things we love to do.
Patients often report achy knees, stiffness in the knees, and knee pain with walking or going up and down stairs. If you’re a more active person, knee pain with running, jumping, and/or landing can also be affected. This can cause a major limitation in one’s daily life and often leaves patients stopping wellness and recreational activities, choosing to stay at home instead of enjoying the activities they love. When pain is ignored, the condition can often worsen and cause more functional limitations if left untreated.
General knee pain is often treated quickly with a thorough movement assessment and physical therapy program that will address strength and mobility deficits that are contributing to the pain. One may ask, “why do my knees hurt?”. That is a good question. More often than not, it is because some muscles are tight, others are weak and your body is not doing a good job of absorbing and dispersing the shock encountered throughout the day. When we walk, the approximate force exerted on our knees is approximately 3x our body weight. Therefore, those muscles can fatigue over time if not properly trained. It’s important to seek care sooner rather than later so you avoid joint damage or early degeneration.
Over time the joint and surrounding cartilage can also break down, muscles may be tight and other muscles may weaken. Now don’t get scared, not all pain is treated equally and this is not something you need to worry about. Arthritis, a normal progression of “wear and tear” on our joints and bones, plagues approximately 32 million people. That means that the majority of people over the age of 50 have arthritis.
While some of these numbers seem scary, it’s important to note that if you come in early and often, we can often reduce the time needed to get you back to doing the activities you love. When you see a Doctor of Physical Therapy they will complete a full body evaluation that will identify strengths and weaknesses, mobility and flexibility deficits throughout your body and more specifically your knee. Then together you and the Physical Therapist will develop a plan of care that will help you meet your goals and establish a timeline for expected return to your life without knee pain!!!
It’s important to note that in most states you can go see a physical therapist WITHOUT having to see a Medical Doctor or Specialist. Direct Access was established in Illinois in 2018 and has made getting rid of that knee pain more accessible, more affordable, and a faster solution to eliminating knee pain.
See some sample exercises that help most people with general knee pain:
Thomas Test Stretch
Seated Piriformis Stretch
Bridges (Knee Pain)
Sit to stand (Knee Pain)
Most Physical Therapists work with your insurance carrier.
To learn more about osteoarthritis, check out this page from the CDC.