Many of you may think that people only see chiropractors for back and neck pain, but plenty of patients also seek treatment for their knee pain. Knee pain is something we all experience at some point in our lives, especially as we get older. Many athletes and fitness enthusiasts often experience knee pain due to injury, but everyday activities and movements can just as easily trigger pain and fatigue to anyone’s knees.
Before you go and decide to see a professional for your nagging knee pain, there might be some home pain relief exercises you can do when the knees start to hurt. In this article, we want to share with you some of the best exercises to relieve knee pain and strengthen them at the same time. We’ll also help you assess your level of knee discomfort so you will know when to seek proper medical attention.
Best Exercises to Relieve Knee Pain at Home
When working the knee, we also want to target what’s above and below it – namely the ankle, calves, quads, glutes, or hips area. Frequently, there is a weakness in those regions that causes knee discomforts, and these exercises are meant to strengthen them.
Knee Exercise #1: Hamstring Stretch
This stretch targets your hamstrings, i.e., the muscles in the back of your thighs. To do this knee exercise, lay on the floor (preferably on an exercise mat). Straighten both legs, then lift one leg off the floor. Next, wrap your hands behind your thigh and gently pull your knee towards your chest until you feel a slight stretch (Note: Do not overstretch to the point where it becomes painful). Hold for 30 seconds and repeat with the other leg. Repeat the process 2-3 times.
Knee Exercise #2: Half Squat
Half squats are a fantastic way to strengthen your quads, glutes, and hamstrings without putting pressure on your knees. To perform this knee exercise:
- Start by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Place your hands out in front of you for balance, and while looking straight ahead, slowly squat down about 10 inches (this is roughly the halfway point to a full squat).
- Hold the position for 3 seconds, then stand up by pushing through your heels.
We recommend doing 2 to 3 sets of 10 repetitions.
Knee Exercise #3: Calf Raise
Calf raises build up strength in the back of your lower legs or calves. For this exercise, position yourself next to a wall, a sturdy table, or a chair for support. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and start to lift both your heels off the ground. All your weight should then be on the balls of your feet. Next, slowly lower your heels back to the starting position and repeat the action 10 times. Do 2 to 3 sets of this exercise for best results.
Note: Do not rush your movement. Control is essential to strengthening your calf muscles.
Knee Exercise #4: Step-ups
Step-ups are perfect for strengthening your quads, hamstrings, hip flexors, and glutes. To do this knee exercise, use a large, sturdy stool, platform, or even a stair step. When you step your foot on it, your knee should bend to a 90-degree angle. Step up onto the platform with the right foot, followed by the left foot to stand on the platform. Return to the starting position by stepping down with the right foot first, then left. Do 15 repetitions starting with the right foot and another 15 reps starting with the left foot. We recommend doing 2 to 3 sets of this knee exercise.
Knee Exercise # 5: Hamstring Curls
As you can probably tell from the name, hamstring curls target your hamstrings and glutes. This knee exercise can also improve your core strength since you need to keep your upper body and hips steady when performing it. For this exercise, stand hip-width apart in front of a wall or chair for support. Lift one foot with your heels facing the ceiling, bend your knee, and raise your heels. Lift as high as you can while keeping your upper body still and hips facing forward. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds, lower down, and do the same thing to your other leg. Do 2 to 3 sets of 10 reps for each leg.
When Should I See a Chiropractor for Knee Pain?
If you’ve tried our knee pain relief exercises and you don’t notice any improvement with your knees, or worse, they hurt more or may have possibly stopped moving altogether, it’s probably time to go and seek help from a professional. Time is of the essence when you are dealing with knee pain – meaning, the sooner you get it examined and treated, the fewer chances of your knee pain recurring and lingering for much longer.
With the proper chiropractic care, you can address all the underlying knee conditions you might have and reduce pain, swelling, and increase your knee’s range of motion. Chiropractors can also help with that clicking sound you might be hearing from your knee joints.
Maintenance chiropractic care is also highly advisable for sufferers of knee pain. A check-up every 1-2 months is ideal to ensure that the knee pain doesn’t return and that you can continue living a healthy, mobile, and flexible life. If you don’t take our word for it, we have research to back it up, which shows that both health costs and pain levels go down with maintenance chiropractic.
So what are you waiting (in pain) for? Get up and try these fool-proof knee exercises, or better yet, schedule a consultation with your chiropractor today.
At the Bergen Chiropractic and Sports Rehabilitation Center, our chiropractic team, led by Dr. Gregory Doerr, follows the highest and most professional medical standards to provide superior chiropractic help. After all, our mission is to provide unparalleled patient care and services in a comfortable healing atmosphere. Contact us to learn more about our chiropractic services!