Knee Osteoarthritis: Try These Three Exercises

25 December, 2019
Knee osteoarthritis causes pain and inflammation in the joint due to progressive deterioration. Try out these exercises to improve your symptoms.

Knee osteoarthritis is a degenerative disease that affects your knee joints. It mainly affects women over 60, and it’s simply a consequence of progressive wear and the loss of cartilaginous tissue.

Today, we’d like to share a few exercises that can help you relieve the pain associated with knee osteoarthritis. Be patient and disciplined and you won’t just help ease the pain, but will significantly slow down the deterioration.

About Knee Osteoarthritis

Knee osteoarthritis can impair your walking and overall movement. However, the symptoms and severity vary from person to person. However, what’s common in all cases is the fact that there’s progressive deterioration over time.

This occurs in stages. In the first stage, a person will begin to feel the pain that increases progressively, especially when we do physical activity. They’ll likely feel stiff, as there’s inflammation on their knee joint.

This is the perfect stage to start taking preventative measures.

Read also: Learn about Knee Arthroscopy and its Benefits

Is there a treatment for knee Osteoarthritis?

A person massaging their knee.
Treatment should be appropriate to the symptoms and characteristics of every person. It should include a meal plan together with recommended exercises.

Treatment depends on the intensity of every person’s symptoms and may involve medication or even surgery. In any case, medication can definitely alleviate most symptoms. Unfortunately, however, it won’t reverse the deterioration. It’s for this reason that it’s important to find complementary techniques to get relief.

Also, know that excess weight will worsen the condition as you carry most of it on your knees. You can begin to shed some extra pounds with low-impact aerobic exercises and a balanced diet.

Thus, it’s important to make changes in your activities, especially those that may harm you, like running. Certain movements can deeply impact your knees. The same goes for spending too much time in the same posture. Know that you can also wear knee pads to keep some pressure on them, as long as they’re not too tight so they don’t impair your circulation.

Exercises that may help you relieve knee Osteoarthritis

You’ll see good results by doing some supervised and scheduled exercises at home. Remember, you must do them consistently. For example, you may get relief for 6 months but will lose what you gained if you stop. These exercises should be a part of your routine for as long as you live, if possible.

1. Hamstring stretch

A woman exercising her leg.
After warming up, you can stretch your legs with the help of an elastic band. This will reach most of your muscles in them.

Try doing this kind of stretch after a warm-up routine or after a walk or after moving in any way. Thus, make sure your muscles are warm. This kind of exercise will relieve stiffness and widen your range of mobility. It can also reduce your pain and risk of injury.

It goes like this:

  • First, lie on your back.
  • Then, place an elastic band or a sheet or a t-shirt around one of your feet.
  • Keep the other leg down and straight and lift the one you’re holding. Pull with the foot as much as you can, stretching its tip upwards and towards your body.
  • Then, hold it for about 15 seconds or as long as you can.
  • Repeat with the other leg.
  • Repeat two times with each leg for a total of three sets.

2. Calf stretch

A woman stretching her knee.
Exercising the knee areas adjacent to the joint will help stabilize it.

It’s important to keep your legs toned and, at the same time, flexible to relieve knee osteoarthritis. This is because by strengthening all the muscles surrounding your knee you’ll facilitate the work of your joint. So, we’ll focus on stretching your calf in this second exercise.

  • First, put your hands on the wall just in front of our chest while you stand in front of it.
  • Then, put one leg closer to the wall, bend it slightly with the foot completely on the ground and stretch the other leg keeping your heel on the floor (as in the picture above). You should feel a stretch in your calf as you bend the knee forward on the other leg.
  • Hold the stretch for 30 seconds and do the same with the other leg.
  • Repeat three times with each leg once a day.

Read also 5 Knee-Strengthening Exercises to Do at Home

3. Standing quadriceps strengthening

A person holding their quadricep.
This type of exercise will provide extra support to the joint, reducing impact and pain.

In this last exercise, we’ll focus on strengthening the quadriceps. This large thigh muscle acts as an important knee stabilizer.

  • First, hold onto a counter, table, railing or wall for support.
  • Then, stand on your right foot, keeping your right knee slightly bent.
  • Tighten the muscles on the front of your left thigh first so your left knee is straight but not locked.
  • Then, repeat it but while standing on your left foot and using your right leg.
  • Do at least two more repetitions with each leg.

These three exercises are simple and will help you recover some of the lost mobility of your knee. They’ll also reduce inflammation and pain. Also, your legs will gradually tone, and you’ll notice a significant improvement if you keep them up and add some other regular physical activity to them.