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Safety / Injuries

Taking the Right Steps to Prevent Knee Injuries

Taking the Right Steps to Prevent Knee Injuries

Knee injuries are a real pain – in more ways than one. Not only do they cause you a lot of pain, they also restrict your mobility and prevent you from enjoying the physical activities you love. What's more they can take a very long time to recover from. In most cases they are injuries of overuse and repetitive movements that place excessive stress on the knee over time, which common with aging (arthritis) and people who engage in certain types of regular physical activity. Alternatively, they can be 'one-time' injuries that result from some sudden, excessive force being applied to the knee, or its engagement in any extreme twisting, flexing etc motion. Whatever the cause of your bad knees, fortunately there are numerous steps you can take to prevent injury to your knees. Read on below to find out more.

The best mode of preventing knee injuries consists of learning about your own body, and how to use it correctly! This is especially true if you already have an existing knee condition like arthritis. High-impact exercises are not the best choice in this case. Instead opt for workouts like swimming, walking, low impact aerobic exercises, pilates, etc.

Click image to view full infographic or download PDF here and print for your clients.

Prevent Knee Injury

Regulate your weight

When you are carrying around too much weight, this can place extra stress on your knees, making you more prone to knee injuries and osteoarthritis. To maintain a healthy body weight, be sure to exercise regularly and eat a healthy diet.

Eat a healthy diet

This will also ensure your knee joints and the tendons, ligaments get the nutrients they need to remain strong and healthy.

Opt for low-impact exercises: exercise is great, but there are plenty of exercises you can do that offer a good, solid workout without placing an excessive impact on your knees. When at the gym, opt for the rowing or skiing machines. When outside of the gym, choose swimming or walking instead of running on ultra hard surfaces. But, if you just can’t give up playing basketball, football or other high-impact sport, make sure you wear knee pads on your knees, because they will help keep your knees safe and injury-free.

Warm up properly before exercising: here's another exercise tip. Before you start your daily workout, always remember to warm up properly. Stretch the muscles in front of and behind your thighs – this will reduce the tension in your tendons, making you less prone to strains and sprains in that region.

Weight training: build up your leg muscles, this will provide greater support for your knees and reduce the chances of injury. Just remember to carefully research what are the right weights to lift to keep your knees strong beforehand.

Maintain a REGULAR exercise schedule: this is also very important. Maintain a regular schedule when it comes to exercise, don't decrease your exercise activity, as this will generate weakness and degeneration, making you more prone to suffer a knee injury. And by the same token, if you want to increase the intensity of your workout regimen, do it gradually because a sudden increase makes you more likely to suffer an injury.

Wear the right shoes: this one may seem unlikely, but ensuring you are wearing the right shoes with a good fit will enable you to maintain the proper balance and leg alignment, thus preventing the occurrence of knee injuries.

Avoid certain types of movement: for example, bending your legs to the point where the knees extend out beyond the toes is a great way of causing yourself a knee injury, as this motion puts huge pressure on your knee-cap and underneath it. Again, it's a matter of learning about your body and what it is and is not designed to do.

Most of these measures seem like common sense. However, you would be surprised how many people overlook them, and end up doing damage to their knees. Follow these simple measures and you avoid knee injuries and extend their longevity. Don't deprive yourself of the opportunity to enjoy the physical activities you love through sheer laziness.

Mathew Foster

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