The knee is a hinge joint but we tend to ask so much more of it than it is bio mechanically made for. As a hinge joint it is meant to flex and extend however we accidentally ask it to twist and turn when we develop poor posture or have an unforeseen trip up a stair, down a gutter or wear a pair of shoes that place our knee into unusual alignment. Like the rest of your body it gives and gives until it says “hey there, you are messing with me so here is a little taste of pain before you completely stuff me up”. It is the early signs of discomfort that you need to address immediately to avoid serious problems with this joint. If you have had reoccurring pain in your knee and do not get relief from the suggested exercises I suggest seeking the guidance of your local practitioner ASAP.
When we walk we are asking a range of movements to occur systematically and automatically. Sometimes we need to think about how we walk to assist our bodies in establishing a more productive movement pattern. Ensure we are moving through the ankle therefore don’t shuffle, think of how you are distributing your weight through the foot, are you too far on your toes or heels? It is ideal to have your patella (knee cap) falling in line with your second toe, careful y aren’t rolling in or out at the foot or ankle, all of these thoughts assist the mechanical tracking. Even your spinal posture can assist how you are weight bearing through your lower limbs. Remember to keep tall, try not to look down, look up and forward. Take a look at some of other blogs to assist with posture.
The 1st suggested exercise is the ITB (iliotibial band) rolling. It is in fact rolling much more than the ITB, however it has adopted this name in the industry so you may have heard of it or even been suggested to do it. As in the pictures provided set up on a straight underneath leg close to your hip. Allowing as little or as much of your body weight to be on the roller, then begin rolling out the tissue down the side of the leg down to the knee. The first time you may be surprised how painful it is. The more painful it is the most likely you need to do it often to assist your knees to be happy again. Remember, always breath …
This rolling exercise is to assist the alignment of the knees if your adductors,the muscles on the inside of your leg are overworking and have become tight they too can cause a tracking issue for the bones in your legs.
As in the pictures, lie on your side with the knee and shin resting at a right angle in line with your hip that is on the ground. Again this can be very painful so add as little or as much weight as you feel is appropriate. Allow your inner thigh to be massaged towards the groin. Yes and you guessed it do not hold your breath through the challenging areas.
Now we want to roll out your calf muscles. This is quite simple and nice in comparison to the other two above exercises. You can sit against a wall or just have your hands behind you start with the roller length ways under your knees and roll the legs in and away from one another move the roller downwards about 5 cm at a time and repeat. Some areas will be juicier than others allow your mind and body to stick with it until it becomes less bumpy.
Hope your knees start to allow you to enjoy your walks and general life activities again. Remember your body is whole and if an area is causing you grief you generally need to look at the whole picture. Begin your online workouts with me and feel the difference.