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Exercises for problem knees

Cover Media logo Cover Media 21/11/2016

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Having aching knees may hinder your workout regime, but relaxing your sessions as a consequence could do your body more harm than good. Don't let your kneejerk reaction be to quit the gym when you're struck down with pain; finding the right routine will strengthen the muscles around the joint and protect from injury by lowering the stress on the knee. Check out the best exercises for bad knees here.

Partial squats

Squats aren't just good for buns of steel; they can also build strong knees. Standing in front of a chair with feet hip-width apart and toes facing forward, bend at the hips and lower yourself halfway down the chair. Keeping abs tight, make sure the motion is a slow and steady one. Knees should stay behind toes.


If you have a step bench use one, if not, working on the bottom stair of a staircase will be fine. Step up using your right foot followed by your left foot, which should lightly tap the step, then lower. Repeat on the other side. Make sure knees are directly over the ankle.

Straight leg raises

Sitting on a chair, straighten and raise your right leg until it's completely horizontal. Foot should be pointing slightly outwards. Move leg up and down while maintaining the contraction in the teardrop muscle (just above the knee). Repeat on the other side.

Hamstring stretch

Sit on the edge of a chair and keep one leg bent and one straightened. With the straightened leg, place the heel on the ground with your foot pointing slightly outwards. Bend towards the straight leg, stretching your hamstring while tensing your teardrop muscle. Keep your back straight and bend from the hips. Switch legs.

Exercises to avoid

And what exercises shouldn't you be doing? advises steering clear of full-arc knee extensions, lunges and deep squats to avoid patella problems.

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