Nearly 50 million Americans have knee problems, either from athletic injuries or everyday wear and tear. The knees are very vulnerable parts of our body. They experience a lot of burden during years of running and other sport activities. The knee joints begin to hurt and make it difficult to live life. Knees can be strengthened by strengthening ones thigh (quads) muscles. These strong muscles support one’s knee and if these muscles are strong, the knee joints will automatically become stronger. There are several exercises to strengthen knees, which will not only reduce knee pain, but will also promote good quality life. Let’s have a look at them.
Best Exercises to Strengthen Knees and Legs
Before carrying any of these knee strengthening exercises, it is important to warm up first. Just walk around for a few minutes before heading on for these knee exercises. This gives the knee joint and thigh muscles time to stretch and warm up.
To perform this left lift knee strengthening exercise, you need to lie flat on your back on the floor. Now keeping your left knee flat on the floor, bend it at 90 degree angle. Then lift your right leg to the height of your left knee’s peak, all the while keeping the knee and leg stretched out straight. Hold the outstretched right leg out for 3-4 seconds and repeat this procedure 10 – 12 times a day with both legs. You need to carry out this exercise one leg at a time, because lifting both legs at the same time can cause stress on one’s back.
This exercise helps strengthen ankles and knees and also alleviates pain and stiffness in these joints. In this exercise you need to stand with your feet positioned next to one another. Now slightly bend your knees and squat midway in air. Place your palms on your knees, such that they cover the kneecaps. As you do this, have your eyes focused on your toes or shoes. Now slowly and gradually, move both your knees in small, clockwise circles. During these movements, your feet has to be in the same position. Only the knee has to be moved. If the toes tend to lift up, it means the clockwise circles your knees are moving in are too large. Reduce the circle width. Carry out such circles for another 10 times, for both sides.
Stand with your feet touching each other. Then lift one leg and hold your knee at the thigh level. This will give your leg a ninety degree posture. Then stretch out your leg and continue straightening it out until you feel a stretch. Continue to hold your thigh. When you feel a stretch, stop straightening and hold the stretch for 5-10 seconds. Doing this 10 times a day will help strengthen the hamstring muscles.
Sit on a chair and extend your legs. Make sure your heels touch the floor. Your outstretched legs will cause your knees to be in straight position. As the knees remain in this straight position, tighten the thigh muscles and as you do this count till ten. After this, relax your leg for 3 seconds and repeat the process. Through these contractions, the quadriceps will get strengthened.
Those with knee pain, must perform exercises that do not put strain on the knees. In case of any kind of pain while exercising, please stop. People suffering from knee pain should first consult the doctor or physiotherapist before attempting any of the above exercises. You need to check with the doctor regarding the safety of carrying out these exercises for your knee. Moreover, people who have undergone knee surgeries should also refrain from attempting these exercise without consultation. Exercises to strengthen knees after surgery need to be very carefully done and should not be taken lightly.