Knee Exercises for Arthritis Pain Relief

Learn how to get and stay fit at home without gym equipment with tips from Voltaren.

Knee Exercise
Knee Exercises to Relieve Pain
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    Text: Knee Exercises To Relieve Arthritis Pain

    Text: 1. Straight Leg Raise

    VO: First, lie on the floor with your left knee bent. Keep your right leg straight, and slowly raise your right leg. Hold for 3 seconds, then switch legs. Do two sets of 10 repetitions, switching legs after each set.

    Text: 2. Heel Raise

    VO: Stand behind a chair for support. Lift both heels up for 3 seconds, then lower. Repeat. Do two sets of 10 repetitions.

    Text: 3. One Leg Lift

    VO: Stand behind a chair without grabbing it. Slowly lift one foot off the floor and stay balanced for 20 seconds without grabbing the chair. Repeat with that leg, then switch sides and do two reps on the other leg.

    VO: In addition to these exercises, Voltaren Arthritis Pain Gel can be used for the temporary relief of arthritis pain in the knees, ankles and feet.

    Text: Use as directed

    Text: The joy of movement

According to the Arthritis Foundation, obesity is the number one preventable risk factor for arthritis in the knee.1 But when it comes to a painful patella, it can be debilitating, and the last thing most people want to do is be active. “If you have arthritis in the knees, sitting at the kitchen table and feeling sorry is the worst thing you can do,” explains Jordan Metzl, MD, sports medicine physician at Hospital For Special Surgery. “Instead, you have to try to be active and improve muscle strength. The stronger the muscles are around your knees, the stronger and better you will feel.”

When the pain strikes, try using Voltaren Arthritis Pain Gel for your arthritis knee pain. It’s clinically proven to relieve arthritis pain.

Another option for knee pain relief: exercise. Give these arthritis knee pain exercises that Dr. Metzl recommends a try. They’re separated based on the specific type of arthritic knee pain you’re experiencing. “No two knees are the same, so depending on which type of arthritis you have, here’s what I recommend,” he says.

[NOTE: Before trying any exercise, consult with your healthcare provider to be sure these movements are safe for you.]

Lateral compartmental (pain on the outer side of knee)

If you have pain on the outer side of your knee, try these specific knee arthritis exercises to help relieve pain.

1. Air Squats

Stand with feet slightly wider than hip-width apart, toes pointed slightly outward. Making sure your knees don’t track past your ankles, slowly bend knees, pushing them outward, as you sit back and down, as though you’re lowering yourself into a chair. Lower yourself as far as you feel comfortable, then push through your heels to stand back up. Repeat for 10 repetitions.

Modification: If you’re just starting out, place a chair behind you or stand in front of a couch. Squat down to the chair or couch, then stand back up.

2. Banded Walks

Place a small band around ankles. Stand with feet hip-width apart. With a slight bend in the knees, slowly step right foot forward and slightly outward toward the right. Then step left foot forward and slightly outward toward the left. Continue for 10 steps with each foot, then turn around and repeat coming back.

3. Indoor Stationary Bike

Bike as you feel comfortable, anywhere from 10 minutes to one hour.

Medial compartmental (pain located near middle of the knee, inner side)

If the middle of your knee near the inner side is bothering you the most, try these three arthritis knee pain exercises. Make sure to start slowly and modify your knee exercises if needed.

1. Air Squats

Like before, stand with your feet hip-width apart and toes pointed slightly outward. Make sure your knees don’t bend over past your ankles, and start to slowly bend your knees, pushing them outward, as you sit back and down, as though you’re lowering yourself into an invisible chair. Squat down as far as is comfortable for you and then stand back up. Repeat these air squats ten times.

You can also try modifications that include placing a chair behind you or standing by your couch. Instead of squatting over nothing, squat down to your chair or couch.

2. Banded Walks

Placing a small band around your ankles, stand with your feet at hip-width. Bend your knees slightly and step your right foot forward and to the right slightly. Then, do the same with your left foot out and to the left. Keep repeating this exercise for ten steps with each foot.

3. Indoor Stationary Bike

If you have an indoor stationary bike at home or your gym, pedal as long as you feel like you can without stressing your knees too much. This can range from ten minutes to an hour normally.

Patellofemoral (pain under kneecap, hurts to bend)

For arthritis pain specifically under your kneecaps that makes it hard to bend your leg, try arthritis knee exercises like these!

1. Straight Leg Raises

Lie flat on back, legs extended out in front of you, arms at your sides. Bend one knee and place your foot on the ground about two feet from the glutes. With foot flexed, slowly raise your straight leg about 12 inches off the ground, hold for two to three seconds, then lower back down. Do 10 repetitions, then switch legs and repeat.

2. Swim

Swim as you feel comfortable, anywhere from 10 minutes to one hour.

3. Indoor Stationary Bike

Just like the indoor stationary bike exercises above, try out biking for pain under your kneecap. Indoor biking has less chances of potentially falling and further injuring yourself. Try it out for 10 minutes at first.

Give these knee pain arthritis exercises a try and chances are, after a few weeks, you may start to notice less pain—and eventually maybe none at all.

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