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The Best Low Impact Exercises to Prevent Knee Pain

Knee Pain can be easily aggravated by doing the wrong exercise. Putting pressure on the knees can cause more stress and pain and worsen the problem. However, we must stay mobile and active and continue to exercise regularly to maintain a healthy lifestyle. So what do we do when we are suffering from knee pain?  Low impact exercise (along with knee strengthening exercises, which you can find out more about here in our eBook).

Low impact exercises do not put pressure on the joints enabling you to stay fit and healthy while your knee recovers and without experiencing more pain.

Swimming is one of the best low impact exercises. Not only is swimming a fantastic cardiovascular exercise, as BMI Health Care explains “the buoyancy of the water supports your body weight, meaning less stress is placed on your joints, which can reduce the pain you feel.

At the same time, water provides more resistance than air, so as you move through the water your muscles are working harder than they feel like they are. Many people find swimming is a good way to exercise vigorously without hurting themselves.

If you swim in warm water, you might also find that the temperature soothes your joints and eases your pain.

Swimming can also help to build and strengthen the muscles around your knees helping to prevent further injury or knee pain.

Indoor Rowing is another vigorous low impact exercise that increases your heart rate and can help to prevent knee pain. Power Rowing state that rowing is “a great low impact workout that truly works every part of your body, in a non-stressful way“. Furthermore, “by simulating a water rowing boat, the rowing machine (or erg) works almost every muscle in your body while also engaging your heart and lungs, allowing you to build your stamina with cardio. This increase in muscle movement and stamina allow you to work on calorie burning and strength training all at once. It’s perfect for any age is because it’s easy to use and gives you a great low impact high-intensity workout. “. 

What is important here is your technique and how you are seated whilst rowing.  Be aware of maintaining good posture.

Cycling is a great low impact aerobic exercise perfect for strengthening the knees and avoiding further stress. However, this is dependent on a bike assessment ensuring that the bike and saddle are at the correct height.  You could also use a stationary bike.  Cycling Weekly claim that ” when scientists compared groups of exercisers – long-distance runners and cyclists, they found the runners suffered 133-144 per cent more muscle damage, 256 per cent more, inflammation and DOMS 87 per cent higher.” Cycling has many physical benefits and is also an excellent way to get around without having a negative effect on the environment.

Using the Cross-Trainer is an ideal non-weight bearing exercise that will not put much strain on the knees.  Healthline describe the elliptical trainer (crosstrainer) as a “zero-impact movement (that) allows you to increase the intensity of your workout without increasing the stress on your joints.”  At ALO Physiotherapy Clinic we often recommend using the cross trainer when you have knee pain in the retrograde mode (i.e. backwards), this is because it offloads the pressure on the joints.  This is particularly good for someone suffering from knee pain in the joints caused by arthritis and is a good alternative to running or jogging.  We see many patients suffering from knee pain at ALO Physiotherapy Clinic, for more information on how we treat knees head here or you can download our eBook 10 Tips to avoid knee injuries & knee pain.  Give us a call today to book your first appointment 0207 636 8845.

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