Knee pain is perhaps one of the most frustrating injuries and sadly, is an injury that plagues far too many women. Knee pain will sideline you in a hurry, rendering it nearly impossible to continue on with the workouts that you have planned.
Fortunately, the great news is that with the right steps, you can prevent knee pain before it starts. While we can’t guarantee that you’ll never suffer from knee pain, if you put the following tips in order, you will be dramatically decreasing your chances of it occurring.
Here’s what to know.
Watch Your Knee Tracking
The very first thing that you need to be doing is watching how your knees track over your toes whenever you do exercises like lunges, squats, or leg press. If you ever see your knee moving inward or outward, moving away from the line directly over the toes, stop the exercise immediately.
If the knee is not tracking properly, it’ll put excessive strain on the tendons and ligaments, likely leading you to an injury.
Strengthen Your Quads And Hamstrings
The second must-do is to ensure that you have put steps in place to strengthen your quads and hamstrings. This means doing a series of exercises like lunges, hamstring curls, leg extensions, as well as the ‘big lifts’ of squats and deadlifts.
By strengthening these two muscles, you’ll be providing more support for the knee joint, lowering your risk of injuries.
Just do be sure as you do this that you strengthen both muscle groups equally. If you have much stronger quads than hamstrings or vice versa, that can itself lead to knee pain development.
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Avoid Repetitive Movements
It’s also a must that you avoid repetitive movements. Cross training should be built into any good workout routine to help manage this. If you are a runner for instance, every so often, take a break from running and use the elliptical.
Or, if you are heavy into strength training, consider adding one or two days of bodyweight training. These cross training activities will help lower the overall tension and stress on the knee joint, decreasing your injury risk.
And as with any workout program, make sure that you also always have one day off for rest and recovery.
Know Your Limits
Finally, know your limits. While it’s great to push hard, if you push too hard, that too can lead to fast injury. Always be sure that you are using proper form whenever you’re doing an exercise and if the weight is too great it prevents you from doing so, back off and lighten the load.
Often injuries result when someone simply tries to push too hard for too long. It’s great to challenge yourself, but don’t go overboard.
So there you have the key points to know and remember when it comes to preventing knee pain. This is one injury that you’ll really want to do whatever you can to side-step because once you’re suffering, you’ll find it’s a hard injury to get rid of.