5 Effective Exercises for Knee Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a disease of the joint cartilage associated with secondary changes in the underlying bone which may cause pain and compromise the function of the affected joint. OA is the result of aging and general wear and tear. Exercise is important in order to maintain a full range of movement at the knee. Be careful not to over-exercise as this may cause increased pain. 

It is important to stretch and strengthen the surrounding leg muscles to provide more support and reduce stresses around the joint. The following exercises will help get started on the path to feeling stronger, more flexible and more active.

Hamstring Stretch
Stretching keeps one flexible and improves the range of motion, or how far one can move their joints in certain directions. It also helps lower the odds of pain and injuries. Always warm up with a 5-minute walk first. Lie down when ready to stretch the hamstring. Loop a bed sheet around the right foot. Use the sheet to help pull the straight leg up. Hold for 20 seconds, then lower the leg. Repeat twice. Then, switch legs. Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions, 1 time daily.

Calf Stretch
Hold onto a chair for balance. Bend the right leg. Step back with the left leg, and slowly straighten it behind. Press the left heel toward the floor. Feel the stretch in the calf of back leg. Hold for 20 seconds. Repeat twice, then switch legs. For more stretch, lean forward and bend the right knee deeper -- but don’t let it go past the toes. Perform 3 repetitions, 1 time daily.

Quadriceps Setting
This exercise helps to strengthen the quadriceps muscle (the big muscle on the front of the thigh), an important stabilizer of the knee. Lie on the back with the leg to be exercised straight.  Place a small rolled towel underneath the knee. Slowly tighten the muscle on top of the thigh (quadriceps) and push the back of the knee down into the rolled towel.  Hold contraction for 5 seconds and then slowly release, resting 5 seconds between each contraction. Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions, 1 time daily.

Gluteus Strengthening
This exercise will help strengthen the gluteus muscles (the large muscles at the back of the hip), aiding in trunk control, leg stability and balance while standing and walking. Lie on the stomach with hips over a pillow to support the back. Keeping the leg to be exercised straight, squeeze the buttocks and lift the leg slightly off the bed. Slowly lower. Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions, 1 time daily.

Side Leg Raise
Stand and hold the back of a chair for balance. Place your weight on the left leg. Stand tall and lift the right leg out to the side -- keep the right leg straight and outer leg muscles tensed. Hold 3 seconds, then slowly lower the leg. Do two sets of 10 repetitions. Switch legs after each set.

Need more advice or treatment? Many health care experts at antarnaad are always here to help you out. Antarnaad is a growing network of experienced physiotherapists, providing treatment for all the conditions. For more information visit our website www.antarnaad.net or call our consultant: Mb: 9899700187