The most common type of arthritis that occurs in the knees is osteoarthritis. It is a progressive disease that slowly wears away the joint cartilage. It occurs because normal wear and tear reduces the cartilage that forms a cushion in our knee joints.
When the bones rub together without cartilage, it leads to pain, swelling, stiffness and even deformity.
Exercises for arthritis in the knees decreases joint pain and stiffness while increasing flexibility. Therefore, exercise is known to have benefits for people with arthritis and must be done even if one feels reluctant to do so. Regular exercising also helps to improve sleep and boost your endurance.
- Walking is in fact an excellent form of exercise for arthritis patients. It’s low-impact, and because it’s a weight-bearing exercise, it helps strengthen the muscles and build bone. Wear good, sturdy shoes.
- Standing quadriceps stretch – The quadriceps muscles are a group of four muscles at the front of your thighs that run from your hips to your knees. They are the strongest muscles in the body and control the extension of the knee. Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Keep your back straight. Place your left hand on a wall. Then bend the right knee and bring the right foot back. Reaching back with the right hand, grab the ankle. Breathe deeply and hold for 10-30 seconds. Repeat on opposite side. (Posture Image)
- Kick Backs – You must do kicking exercises for arthritis knee pain. Stand straight and support yourself by holding the back of the chair to do kick-backs. Move the leg up and back while keeping your knee straight. Do 10 to 12 repetitions of each of these exercises on both legs at least three times a week. (Posture Image)
- Hip Circles – Stand on one leg, using a countertop for support, and gently swing the opposite leg in circles out to the side. Perform 20 circles in each direction.
- Half Squat – Standing with your feet shoulder-distance apart, stretch your arms out in front of you (hold on to a chair for balance, if necessary), and slowly bend your knees until you’re in a half-sitting position. Keep your back straight and don’t lean forward. Hold this position for five seconds, then slowly stand back up. Do 10 repetitions, and slowly work up to three sets of 10. This exercise strengthens the muscles in the front and back of your thighs. (Posture Image)
- Side Lying Straight Leg Exercises – While lying on your side, lift your leg straight up. Perform up to 3 sets of 10. This exercise is crucial in building your hip muscles. These muscles stabilize your pelvis while you are standing and walking.
- Swimming – It helps reduce the stress on painful weight-bearing joints due to buoyancy in water. Immersing in warm water raises your body temperature, causing your blood vessels to dilate and increasing circulation. Start out slow, and gradually increase your pace and distance for best results.