Physiotherapy Exercises For Knee Pain – Do you suffer from knee pain, or did you just have surgery? Is your knee achy or stiff? This article is for you!
Simple day to day activities can result in wear and tear of the knee, causing reduced mobility. This can also cause instability in the knee. Hence, the need for physiotherapy exercises for knee pain relief.
Although you might feel getting on your feet and moving around is counteractive, doing these exercises is an excellent way to recover knee strength and speed up recovery.
Study shows that doing knee workouts after an injury can prevent stiffening in the knee joint and give support. This makes it easy to move around and reduce pain. With these moves, you will be able to get back to doing the things you enjoy without stress or anxiety.
This article contains seven recommended physiotherapy exercises for knee pain relief.
How The Knee Works
The knee joint is the meeting point for the thigh and shin bones. Cartilage covers the end of each bone, allowing the bones to move against each other without friction. The knee joint contains two extra pieces of cartilage called Menisci. The menisci evenly distribute the load across the knee.
Also, the knee joint is held up by four ligaments. These ligaments are thick, strong bands that run inside and just outside the joint capsule. With the capsules, the ligaments prevent dislocation and keep the bones from moving in the wrong direction. The knee joint is also held in place by quadriceps, which is the muscle of the thigh.
What Causes Knee Pain?
Knee pain can be a result of diverse conditions. The most popular is a condition called osteoarthritis, which affects body joints. Here, the surfaces in the joints get damaged such that the affected joint doesn’t move as smoothly as it should.
Additionally, knee pain can be a result of an unhealthy diet, knee injuries and surgeries, rheumatoid arthritis, and lack of vitamin D. However, it is also traceable to a wide range of activities such as sport, recreational activities, slips, and falls, accidents, etc.
While your doctor will be in the best position to determine the cause of your knee pain, the exercises prescribed in this article is useful for treating every kind of knee pain.
Read Also: 7 Best Home Remedies for Knee Pain Relief
Conventional Treatments Of Knee Pain
These are the more popular treatments for knee pain that are a go-to option:
There are diverse over the counter tablets and creams that are used for healing knee pain. These painkillers include paracetamol and ibuprofen. They are also a potent option if you need them. However, you will have to take them regularly and follow the recommended prescription to control the pain.
Also, note that you should not use aspirin or ibuprofen if you have existing medical conditions like asthma, ulcer, or indigestion. Pregnant women should even speak to their doctors before using any pain medication. Doctors can prescribe stronger painkillers or cream if conventional over-the-counter drugs do not work.
If knee pain persists and is hampering your daily activity, your GP may have to refer you to a physiotherapist. Doing physiotherapy helps to manage pain and increase strength and flexibility.
A physio session offers you different treatment and helps you to understand your problem. In no time, you will be back to your normal activities.
If knee pain persists even after doing physio sessions or if the pain becomes so severe that you have problems with mobility, the best option might be to do surgery. However, this is solely at the discretion of your doctor.
Another possible treatment to get rid of knee pain is to lose weight if you are overweight or do low impact knee exercises. Keep reading this article for the best physiotherapy exercises for knee pain relief.
Do This Before and After Doing Physiotherapy Exercises
Possibly before doing these exercises, place a moist-heat pack on your injured knee for 20 minutes. The heat performs a soothing function and increases circulation. This results in reduced stiffness and alleviated pain.
Also, If you are already using pain medications, take them about 45 minutes before making the moves. This is for pain control during the workout.
Lastly, after exercising, place an ice pack on the affected knee for about 15 minutes. It will help to reduce any swelling as a result of exercise. It will also soothe and relieve pain.
7 Best Physiotherapy Exercises For Knee Pain Relief
While there are many recommended physiotherapy exercises for knee pain relief, you need to speak with a medical practitioner before doing any of them. That way, you can avoid exaggerating the pain and causing further damage.
Making simple workout moves is enough. Do not use weights, try football or any other strenuous activity.
1. Walking or Water Exercises
An excellent form of exercising is walking. As it is a low-impact workout that bears body weight, it strengthens the muscles and builds the bone. When going out, ensure you wear good and sturdy shoes. Then, start slow before gradually increasing the pace and distance for improved results.
Additionally, doing water exercises or walking in the shallow end of a pool is great for knee workouts. It improves muscle strength and knee flexibility. This works well because the body is weightless in water, lessening the impact to a near zero.
2. Lying Hamstring Stretch
The hamstrings are the muscles on the back of the thighs that are connected to the knees. The lying hamstring stretch exercise stretches the hamstrings while strengthening it. Do the stretch one leg at a time.
How To Do It:
- Start by lying flat on the floor or bed with your legs bent at the knee and your feet firmly placed on the floor.
- Then, slowly raise one leg while it is still bent and bring it close to your chest.
- Link your hands together and place it behind your thighs, not knees.
- Now, straighten your leg and bring it towards your head till you can feel a stretch.
- Hold the pose for 30-60 seconds before slowly bending your knee and returning your leg to the floor.
- Repeat the move on both legs.
3. Single-Leg Dip
This workout move builds support for the muscles on the front and back of your thighs. It also works your gluteal muscles, giving you fantastic butt shape in the process.
How To Do It:
- Start by standing between two sturdy chairs and hold on to the back of them for balance.
- Then, raise one leg to about 12 inches off the ground and stretch it out in front of you.
- With your back straight, slowly bend the other leg and lower your body by a few inches mimicking a sitting motion. Be careful to not cross the lifted leg in front of the bent one.
- Stay in this position for 5 seconds before going back up.
- Do one set of four single-leg dips before switching legs.
Note: You can work up the workout to three sets of four moves gradually.
4. Single-Leg Raise
The move strengthens the quadriceps. This is the largest group of muscle on the front of the thighs, and it is joined to the knee joints.
How To Do It:
- Get into the start position by laying flat on your back on the floor or bed with your arms placed at your side.
- Straighten one leg while engaging your leg muscles and keep your toes pointed towards the ceiling.
- Then, slowly raise your leg till it is a few inches off the ground.
- Simultaneously engage your stomach muscles to push your lower back into the floor or bed.
- Hold the pose for 5 seconds before returning your leg to the floor.
- Do one set of four on the leg before switching sides.
5. Half Squat
The half-squat workout move is a variation of the popular squat movement. This move strengthens the muscles on the front and back of your thighs. Just like the regular squat move, the half squat also works the gluteus and helps you build bigger butts.
How To Do It:
- Start by standing with your feet placed at a shoulder-width distance apart and stretch your arms in front of you or in a prayer pose.
- Then, slowly bend your knees until you are at a half-sitting position. You can use a chair for balance here if necessary.
- Ensure that your back is straight and chest lifted while doing this. Also, do not lean forward while making this move.
- With your foot firmly placed on the floor, stay in this pose for 5 seconds.
- Then, slowly raise your body to a standing position with your back still straight.
- Start with ten reps before slowly increase it to three sets of 10 reps.
6. Bridge Move
The bridge moves isolates and strengthens your hamstrings and butt muscles. It also improves core stability by working your abdominal muscles and the muscles in your lower back and hip.
How To Do It:
- Start by lying down on your back with both knees bent at a 90-degree angle and your feet placed flat on the bed.
- Engage your butt and abdominal muscles by contracting them and raise your glutes towards the ceiling as high as possible without curving your back.
- Hold the bridge pose for about 5 seconds before slowly returning to the ground.
- Do 10-15 repetitions of the move before gradually moving to 3 sets of 10 reps.
7. Leg Stretch
This is a simple knee exercise that strengthens the quadriceps, improves blood flow, and eases stress.
How To Do It:
- To start, sit on the floor with both legs stretched out.
- Keep your body stable by placing your hands on either side of your hips with your back straight.
- Now, slowly bend one leg at the knee until it feels stretched, but stop as soon as it gets painful.
- Hold the leg in that position for 5 seconds and then slowly straighten it out as far as possible, holding it for another 5 seconds.
- Do ten reps on the leg before switching to the other leg.
Prevalent causes of knee pain include sprains, ligament tears, and sometimes genetics. No matter the cause of it, these exercises will help to relieve knee pain in no time.
The best part is with these workout moves; you also do not need to take drugs each time you feel pain in your knee unless otherwise instructed by a doctor. Add as many of these moves to your lifestyle, and you’ll get the best result in no time!
Enjoy Sound Health!