If your knee has been bothering you and is interfering with your daily life, then it’s time to stop overlooking it. Thankfully, incorporating small changes in your lifestyle can improve your quality of life and help you maximize knee movement. Here’re 6 tips to relieve knee pain.

1 | Exercise the right way

Too much rest can weaken your muscles and worsen your pain. Find an exercise program that is safe for your knees. Simply raising a straightened leg while sitting or lying down will strengthen the muscles and help them stabilize the knee. Please note that:

  • High-impact exercises can further injure painful knees. So, avoid jarring exercises such as running, jumping, and kickboxing. For cardio, some good choices include walking, swimming, water aerobics, stationary cycling, and elliptical machines.
  • Half-squats and partial lunges may actually make the problem worse. A full range of motion will allow your knee to be properly exercised and the corresponding muscles to contribute evenly.
  • Avoid isolation exercises (such as hamstring curls, leg extensions), which can damage the knee joint. Focus your workouts on compound movements like squats and deadlifts that allow all the muscles surrounding the knee to contract.
  • It’s important to listen to the professionals when you’re starting to exercise. Don’t increase the length and intensity of workouts too quickly.

2 | Maintain a healthy weight

A healthy diet can help you keep weight off and ease pressure on the affected knee. Since carrying extra weight gives the joints more work to do, losing it will help reduce knee pain caused by arthritis. A healthy diet should be low in fat and high in fruits, vegetables, and fiber.

3 | Practice good posture and support

Avoid putting the strain on your knee. A good sitting posture is important to do so. Always:

  • Avoid sitting on chairs or couches that are low to the ground.
  • Avoid long periods without moving. In osteoarthritis, prolonged sitting can produce a stiff, painful knee.

4 | Lift objects rightly

Many of the knee injuries are the result of lifting, pushing, pulling, carrying, holding, or restraining objects. There is a right way and a wrong way of carrying things. Always bend your knees instead of your back while lifting heavy stuff.

5 | Use mobility aids

Don’t be shy about using a walking aid if knee pain is severe. A crutch or cane can take the stress off your knee and help you stay stable. Relying on a flimsy drugstore brace can be dangerous in significant and recurring pain. Ask your doctor if it’s worth getting fitted for a load-bearing brace.

6 | Make right shoe choices

If you have knee pain, wearing flip flops is not a good idea. Choose shoes with cushioned insoles to reduce stress on your knees. If knee pain is the result of osteoarthritis, special insoles can be put in your shoe. Your doctor or a physical therapist can help you with that.

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