Knees (1)

springpic2

Baby sunflowers

As Spring advances there’s a tendency for us all to start getting out and doing more – great!

Occasionally however – be it via running, walking, gardening or something else – too much enthusiasm and not enough fitness can cause our KNEES to start to complain – not so great!

For the athletes this is often termed “overuse injury” and for the rest of us simply “overdoing it”.

knees

Perhaps your knees had been making some disgruntled noises in the background anyway. A few common signs that that rather important joint is not totally happy are:

  • You can’t or avoid squatting all the way down to a fully bent-knee position
  • You avoid sitting down on the floor because you’re not sure that you’ll be able to get up again or know that it will cause discomfort
  • You avoid kneeling on your knees or putting pressure on them
  • Running/walking up hill or down, upstairs or down, doesn’t seem quite as easy as it used to…..

 

Maximising the two following points is crucial to gaining/maintaining healthy knees:

  1. RANGE OF MOVEMENT - knees that can bend AND straighten as far as possible
  2. STRENGTH – having knees and surrounding muscles that can support as much body weight as possible through a range of movements & activities.

And as ever:

Doing ‘stuff’ is key!

Get up, stand up!

Take a screen break and use that body,

that’s what it’s designed for!

Try the following:

BIG KNEE STRETCHheel slide with knee to chest

Lie on your back as shown, or sit back against a wall, or improvise – you could do this whilst sat in a chair – no excuses! Straighten your leg at the knee as much as possible – use that thigh muscle to get as much straightness as you can. Now reverse and pull your knee up towards your chest, bending that knee as much as possible. Repeat!

 

SIDE LYING LEG LIFT

sidelyinghipABD

Lie on your side with a nice straight top leg, keeping it in line with your upper body as you raise your leg up towards the ceiling. The effort for this needs to come from the muscles around your hip – it’s an effort that will pay dividends for knee health! Lower your leg nice and slowly. Repeat!

SQUATS

squatsBend at hips and knees as if you’re lowering your bottom onto a stool; make sure your knees don’t go past your toes. Pause in the lowest position that you can comfortably get to then use those thigh and bottom muscles to propel you back to a standing position.

You can practice this one every time you sit and stand – use those muscles to steadily lower your body into the chair – don’t collapse like a sack of spuds. And when you come to stand, try using those muscles in reverse, avoid the temptation to push with your arms.

Remember that as ever, any form of general exercise that boosts your overall fitness, gets your blood pumping and your body moving will be good too. There’s also evidence to suggest that carrying more than a recommended amount of spare body weight around is not going to do your knees any favours, so if you know that this applies to you…. I say no more!

As ever I’m here if you need me, for knees or whatever other body part requires attention. And until next month: keep active, stay well and have fun!

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18 Albert Street
Hebden Bridge
HX7 8AH
07981 931853
info@caldermassage.co.uk

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