All I’ve learned about helping your knees recover and feel amazing
My Journey to Pain-Free Knees:
As someone who has endured multiple knee surgeries and injuries over the years, I know firsthand how frustrating and limiting knee pain can be. At one point after blowing out my knee doing gymnastics, I struggled with pain and mobility issues for over 10 years. I tried everything - physical therapy, braces, taping, medications. But what finally led to lasting relief was learning proper movement principles and targeted exercises to truly strengthen my knees.
Now when working with knee pain clients, I teach 3 foundational keys. As I explain, “when we stand up from a chair if we have knee pain and we put our weight onto our toes and we bring our knees forward over our toes like this what we're doing is we're forcing the quad muscle to fire more which can pull the knee joint together and often times when people have knee pain they don't have enough strength inside that knee joint." This grindy compression causes more discomfort. Instead, “use my hips to stand up then my knee Glides nice and smooth.”
Proper weight distribution is also vital. I cue clients to “put 70% of the weight on your heels and 30% on the ball of your feet.” This takes pressure off the delicate knee joint. Lastly, alignment is crucial. I see many “wobble in” with knees caving inward. But “every time we wobble those knees in we're taking a hinge joint...and putting twisting motion” leading to faster breakdown. The correction: “make sure it's going right out from the middle of your foot.”
Regaining lost flexibility is another key I teach. Many with knee issues lose the ability to deeply squat. But using a towel to “create space in the knee” helps. “You’ll get more range of motion as you come forward and backwards” gapping the knee. Rebuilding this mobility alleviates common pains.
Finally, targeted strength training protects vulnerable knees. I love showing my “favorite way to activate the quads” in a safe range. From a kneeling lunge, dig one toe down keeping that foot engaged. “Immediately...my Quad starts to Fire.” Then “drop my hips backwards” and extend back up working on control through the full motion. Adding in knee gapping here lets me coach clients through growing ranges pain-free.
Through proper mechanics, flexibility, and strength, the principles I teach now keep my knees feeling years younger. It took patience and commitment, but I've been pain-free for over 5 years! I look to pass these methods on so others can enjoy relief too. Knee pain doesn't have to be a life sentence! With the right approach, there is hope.