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  1. #1
    Moderator Safran's Avatar
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    Default Exercises to strengthen knees

    I know I am supposed to love my knees as they are the only ones I've got, but they keep giving me such a problem! I am ok most of the time and most of the dancing. But if I am sitting in a bus or a car for a longer time they start hurting BAD. I can't hold anything resembling a half-squat, and if I go all the way down, there's no way I can get up gracefully from there. I've had it for quite some years, but dancing has helped me a lot so far. Now, it seems that even that won't be enough.

    I know that it probably has to do with a lot more than just knees, but the pain and the tension is most evident above the kneecap. Any suggestions for exercises that could help me get better.

  2. #2
    Member Alexandros's Avatar
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    Hallo Dear,

    you can start with a very simple exercise: while you're setting in a chair start to lift up your legs not the hole leg (lol) but only the part from the knee to your toes. You can start by one leg at the time and if you wonna push a little bit try both legs at the same time i think its better.Hold them up for 1 sec and then release and again the same.

    This exercise will make the muscles around your knees stronger try 3 set from 20 each day if you can do more there is no problem.

    Take care
    Alexandros

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    V.I.P. Kharmine's Avatar
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    Have you had a medical inspection and X-ray of your knees? I had a friend who had an odd muscular structure around her knees -- it was genetic, and eventually so painful that she had to have her kneecaps replaced at a young age. She was a little stiffer after that, but you can't tell by looking at 'em and at least she has no more pain.

    I'm not saying it may be as bad as that, but it's better to know what exactly so you don't do anything that aggravates the problem.

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    V.I.P. Reen.Blom's Avatar
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    I also suggest consulting a doctor just to make sure everything is ok, because excercises can actually cause damage if there is some medical condition!

    I suggest using some cream like "deepheat" it helps me when my shoulders start giving trouble.
    Last edited by Reen.Blom; 07-27-2007 at 08:01 PM. Reason: spelling :mad:

  5. #5
    Senior Member sedoniaraqs's Avatar
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    You really need to seek advice from a specialist and get him/her to send you to a physical therapist. Knee pain can be caused by many factors, and what's good for one problem may be counterindicated for another.

    Sedonia

  6. #6
    V.I.P. Lydia's Avatar
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    Hi Maariku,yes first go and ask your dokter!! to make sure its all ok in there.....also think of this if the muscles are not sretched properly in your legs it can give you pain around the knee area...make sure you strech every day like front and back muscle,s from your upperleg,,,try this hold your enkle when you stand up strait,while your foot is touching your (patoot)i call it...and keep it for 1 minute like that,make sure your hip hangs nicely and relaxed down!!! Than the other leg....that will strech out the front muscle from your tie...repeat 3 time,s each leg... i am sure you know how to strech the back part of the leg? after this only you start your warmup for dancing see if this helps....Have a nice day...Lydia

  7. #7
    V.I.P. Azeeza's Avatar
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    Wink

    I have pain in my knees too.

    Several years ago I injured one side and for years I over compensated and leaned too heavily on the other and now I have pain in both knees.

    I did see a physician and I had an x ray taken on the injured knee and there was no torn cartilage or bone fragments in my knee, but now I'm prone to having arthritis.

    The doctor recommended exercises similar to what Alexandros mentioned above. My quads needed to be built up to save my knees from undue stress. It has helped quite a bit, but now I live in a house that has a lot of stairs and I've found that has also helped to build up my quads.

    Sometimes I still have pain if I bend my knees in a way they were not meant to be bent (side ways if I'm running up the stairs in a hurry and not taking my time), but most of the time they don't hurt any more.

    I had resigned myself to not ever being able to go down on the floor do floor work with a sword balanced on my head, but I can now and I can also get up gracefully without pain! I was amazed.

    So don't give up hope, but do see a physician to be sure that you haven't torn anything and be patient and work those quads.

    Just my two cents worth,

    Azeeza

  8. #8
    V.I.P. janaki's Avatar
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    Hi Maariku,

    You are not alone! I suffer from pain in my knees too. I have this since I was a child. But it didn't stop me from dancing. I agree with Azeeza on this. Make sure you have your medical checkup just to rule out any other problems. If you don't have any other problems you need to buildup strength in the muscles that support your knee.

    Pls read the extract from an article I read about knee problems (since I suffer from it) I follow this and it helped me a lot. Hope this helps you too.

    "One of the major causes of knee pain is degenerative joint disease. Often the patient has suffered previous injuries, and with age, he or she have become more sedentary. Overall strength has declined, including the muscles that stabilize the knee joint. If these muscles can be strengthened, the pain can often be reduced. To have stron knees the quadriceps must be strong; the hamstrings also should be strong, but they must be stretched to allow full extension of the knee.

    Exercises for Strengthening the Quadriceps

    Leg Raises: Start by lying on the back with one leg straight (the working leg), and the opposite leg flexed, with the foot on the floor. Raise one leg at a time up to 45 degrees and hold. If this is easy, add weight. This can also be done with weights in the gym, sitting on a leg extension machine. The basic motion is to extension the leg against resistance, in order to engage contraction of the quadriceps without engaging the lower back muscles. There are many modifications of this exercise.

    Wall Sit: This is a great exercise for strengthening the quadriceps muscles, hamstrings, gluteal muscles and abdominal muscles. It is an alternative to doing squats and lunges. Stand with the buttocks against the wall, with the feet together and the body erect. Slowly slide down the wall, bending the knees and keeping them together until the thighs are parallel to the floor. Hold for a five count, and then slide back up the wall. If this is too easy, hold for a longer count, until the thighs feel like they are working. As with many exercises, there are several modifications to this exercise; it has also been called the "wall bench."

    Exercises for Strengthening the Hamstrings

    Bridge: This exercise strengthens mainly the glutes and hamstrings. Begin by lying on the back with arms by the side, feet flat on the floor with the knees bent. Slowly raise the hips off the floor, keeping the shoulders on the floor. Raise the hips as high as possible, and squeeze the buttocks and hamstrings. Be careful to keep the knees in line with the hips and ankles. To make the exercise more difficult, grasp the ankles, and then slowly raise the hips off the floor and hold for a 10 count.

    Any exercise that flexes the knees with resistance will engage the hamstrings. For that reason, most gyms have some leg flexion machines.

    In addition to exercises that address the major muscles responsible for flexing and extending the knee, there are many other exercises that address strengthening the muscles that adduct and abduct the leg; however, this discussion is beyond the scope of this article.

    The other major muscle group that is critical to proper knee alignment is the calf muscles. They stabilize the ankle, which is important for coordination, balance and proper knee alignment.

    Calf Raise: This is a simple exercise that can be performed on a staircase. Place the ball of one foot on the edge of a stair, allowing the heel to extend down off the stair. Make certain to hold on to something to keep balanced. Place the other foot next to or behind the ankle of the working leg. Raise up off the toe as high as possible and hold, flexing the calf muscle. Now repeat, allowing the heel to extend down. Of course, perform all of the exercises evenly on both sides.

    Following the strengthening exercises, perform simple stretching. Hold each stretch gently; don't try to overstretch the muscle. Hold for 20-30 seconds without straining or bouncing.

    There are many ways to stretch the leg muscles, but here are a few of the most common ones.

    A good overall stretch for the posterior leg muscles involves standing with one leg on a step or curb and keeping the knees and back straight; bend over to touch the elevated foot. If it isn't possible to touch the foot, just flexion forward as far as possible.

    The Hamstring Stretch is generally performed sitting on the floor, with one leg out straight and the other leg flexed, pressing the foot against the extended leg's inner thigh. Bend forward, keeping the back straight and touching the extended leg's toes. If the toes are not reachable, bend forward as far as possible and hold. Don't force the stretch.

    The Quadriceps Stretch is commonly performed lying on the side, with the hips and shoulders aligned. Place the arm under the head, with the elbow bent, to help relax the neck and balance the position. Hold the top of the ankle of the top leg, and gently pull the leg behind and away from the bottom leg. Hold and do the opposite side.

    Hope this works for you.

    Take care
    Hugs
    Janaki

  9. #9
    Moderator Safran's Avatar
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    Wow, that is a nice truckload of advice - thanks to all

    I've been to the doctor with the problem twice, the last time around three years ago. The x-ray apparently showed nothing bad, they did signed me up for a 10-day cure of heat-therapy (don't know how it is really called in English) and encouraged to continue dancing as it seemed to bring relief. Maybe I should make a new appointment, just in case And if it all works out fine, I'll definitely make use of all your grate suggestions!!!


  10. #10
    V.I.P. Azeeza's Avatar
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    Hi Maariku:

    My doctor recommended that I stop dancing, but he knew that I loved it so much, so he mentioned to my husband that I stop and not directly to me.

    Azeeza

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