Have you ever tried to workout with knee pain? It can be awful and can also derail your progress very easily. Giving you all the excuses to not do your workout.
Knee pain is estimated to affect nearly20 million people in the United States alone, as well as over 600K knee replacements, which occur every year.
There are many causes of knee pain. It can be caused by an injury like a torn ACL, or because of weak muscles surrounding the knee like the hamstrings, or quads, It can also be caused by chronic conditions like Arthritis. Even sitting too long at a desk can create an imbalance in the body by weakening the glute muscles, also causing tight ITB (Iliotibial bands.)
In this article I am going to share 5 postures that will help stabilize the knee as well as strengthen the muscles around it and Stretch your hip flexors essentially working on these 4 muscle groups will make your legs stronger therefor supporting the knee.
Quadriceps (knee extensors)
Hamstrings (knee flexors)
Hip adductors (inner thighs)
Hip abductors (outer thighs
- Chair pose (Utkatasana) OOT-kah-TAHS-anna
Start by standing in mountain pose palms facing inward, or join the palms.
Exhale and bend your knees, trying to take the thighs as nearly parallel to the floor as possible. The knees will project out over the feet, and the torso will lean slightly forward over the thighs until the front torso forms approximately a right angle with the tops of the thighs.
Keep the inner thighs parallel to each other and press the heads of the thigh bones down toward the heels.
Firm your shoulder blades against the back.
Take your tailbone down toward the floor and in toward your pubis to keep the lower back long.
Stay for 30 seconds.
To come out of this pose straighten your knees with an inhalation, lifting strongly through the arms. Exhale and release your arms to your sides into mountain pose.
Muscles used in this pose.
2. Triangle pose (Utthita Trikonasana) Tree-kone-ahs-ana
Stand straight. Separate your feet comfortably wide apart about 3-4 ft. Turn your right foot out 90 degrees and left foot in.
Now align your center of right heel with the center of your arch of the left foot.
Inhale deeply and as you exhale, bend your body to the right, downward from the hips, keeping the waist straight, allowing your left hand to come up in the air while your right hand comes down towards the floor. Keep both arms in a straight line.
Rest your right hand on your shin, ankle, or the floor outside your right foot, whatever is possible depending on how flexible you are.. Stretch your left arm toward the ceiling, in line with the tops of your shoulders. Keep your head in a neutral position or turn it to the left, eyes gazing softly at the left palm.
Make sure your body is bent sideways and not backward or forward. Pelvis and chest are wide open.
Smooth breathing in and out for 30 seconds.
As you inhale, come up, bring your arms down to your sides, and straighten your feet.
Repeat the same on the other side.
Muscles used for this pose
- Warrior 1(Virabhadrasana I) veer-ah-bah-DRAHS-anna
Stand in mountain pose.
Breathe deeply and evenly, calming your mind. Turn to the left.
Exhale as you step your feet wide apart, about 3-4 feet.
Turn your right foot out 90 degrees, so your toes are pointing to the top of the mat.
Pivot your left foot inwards at a 45-degree angle.
Align your front heel with the arch of your back foot. Keep your pelvis turned toward the front of your mat.
Press your weight through your left heel. Then, exhale as you bend your right knee over your right ankle. Your shin should be perpendicular to the floor. Lift through the arches of your feet, while rooting down through your ankles.
Reach up strongly through your arms. Broaden across your belly, lengthen the sides of your waist, and lift through your chest. Keep your palms and fingers active and reaching.
You can keep your arms parallel, or press your palms together.
Gently tilt your head back and gaze up at your thumbs. Keep your shoulders dropped away from your ears. Feel your shoulder blades pressing firmly inward.
Press down through the outer edge of your back foot, keeping your back leg straight.
Hold for up to one minute.
To release the pose, press your weight through your back heel and straighten your front leg. Lower your arms. Turn to the left, reversing the position of your feet, and repeat for the same length of time on the opposite side.
Muscles used in this pose.
4. Warrior III ( Virabhadrasana III) veer-ah-bah-DRAHS-anna
From Mountain pose, step the right foot a foot lengths forward and shift all of your weight onto this leg.
Inhale the arms over your head and interlace the fingers, pointing the index finger up.
As you exhale, lift the left leg up and out, hinging at the hips to lower the arms and torso down towards the floor.
Look down at the floor and stare at a point for balance.
Reach out through the left toes and the crown and fingers making one straight line.
Breathe and hold for 30 seconds
To release: inhale the arms up to lower the leg back to the floor and step both feet together back into Mountain pose.
Muscles used for this pose.
- Cobbler’s Pose (Baddha Konasana)
Begin seated in Staff Pose (Dandasana) with your legs outstretched straight in front of you.
Bend your knees and bring the soles of your feet together as you let your knees fall out to either side.
Draw your feet in as close to your body as is comfortable. Back off if you feel any pain in your knees Or groin area
Press the outer edges of your feet together strongly. The feet may begin to open like a book. You can encourage this with your hands or hold onto your big toes in a yogi toe lock.
Sit up tall with a long spine while keeping your shoulder blades on your back and your shoulders moving away from your ears.
Don’t push your knees down with your hands or try to force them down. If your knees won’t go to the floor, simply leave them in the lowest natural position. Try to release the heads of the thigh bones. With practice, it is likely that you will develop the flexibility that allows them to go to the floor unassisted.
Don’t round your back and shoulders. You want a long torso with your shoulders relaxed.
Muscles used in this pose.
Now that you can see how beneficial yoga is for every part of your body, stagnant stretches are great for your muscles and flexibility and it aids in resisting injury.
I have to do these stretches every week before and after my workouts, It worms up my muscles as well as stretches and makes room for my muscles to grow.
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