Are you sick of dealing with daily, frustrating knee pain? The type of pain which niggles away at you, hurts when you twist your knee or walk up and down stairs.
If that sounds like you, then trust me, you are not alone.
Painful, arthritic knees are one of the most common things we will see within Concentric Rehabilitation Centre. A lot of people struggle with ways that they can reduce their knee pain, because they have been told by their doctor that they have ‘bone on bone’ and there is ‘nothing you can do about it other than have a knee replacement’.
So, what exercises can you do to reduce your knee pain so that you can improve your quality of life and start enjoying your day to day again?
I will get onto answering that question in another blog soon, but, in my opinion, something should be done before you begin your exercises, and that is, change the daily habits that could be bringing knee pain on!
There is no use beginning a regime of exercises if you are continuing to ‘prod the bear’ and aggravate your knee further.
Here are 3 of the most common things I see people doing, that contribute to painful knees (in no particular order)
1. Wearing soft ‘cushiony’ shoes
You know the kind, (without mentioning brand names but my pet-hate starts with an S) they are really nice to walk in, have a super soft base, feel like you aren’t wearing anything at all! Guess what – these types of shoes are doing you more harm than good.
You need to be wearing a supportive shoe that holds your heel bone in place and stops unnecessary foot movement. The best type of shoe is a shock absorbing shoe which will reduce the body weight impact on your knee and hip joints.
The next time you are going to be buying a pair of shoes, there are three tests you can use:
1. You should not be able to push the back of the shoe down flat.
2. The shoe should bend at the toes, not through the middle of the shoe.
3. You should not be able to ring the shoe out like a sponge.
2. Being overweight
Did you know, that for every 1-pound extra body weight, adds an additional 4 pounds of weight onto the knee. Therefore, even modest reductions in your weight will significantly lighten the stress being placed on the knee.
Now I could write an entire article on weight loss and healthy eating (good idea for next blog!) my weight loss theory is quite simple – think of a see-saw. Less calories in vs. expend more energy. You will tip the see-saw in the direction of weight loss.
3. Thinking that walking will suffice as exercise to fix knee pain
If I earned a dollar for every time a patient of mine asked if they ‘could just walk more to help ease their knee pain’ I would be a rich man (well probably not but I have definitely been asked this A LOT of times).
Put simply, if walking was going to help, it would have helped already. You have been walking, and will continue to walk on a daily basis and it hasn’t prevented knee pain, so why would it start working now? My response is always the same: STRENGTH IS THE ANSWER. In order to get significant reductions your knee pain, you need to strength and stretch the surrounding muscles – more on this next time.
So, if you have answered yes to any of the above, then please, try your best to:
- Wear good shoes
- Lose a little bit of weight (5kg would be great)
- Start doing the correct exercises to strengthen and stretch your muscles.
Keep reading our blog over the coming week’s to learn the top exercises to reduce your knee pain.