Exercises to prevent knee pain - Women's Running

Exercises to prevent knee pain

Author: Women's Running Magazine

Read Time:   |  November 17, 2017

KNEELING SIDE PLANK, LIFT TOP LEG

Areas trained: core, inner and outer thigh, bottom (transversus abdominis, adductors, abductors, glutes)

13115620_166413057089976_1904528862_nWhy do it?
Running is a linear sport. By strengthening the muscles in the side of your body you can improve your endurance and running technique.

Technique:
■ Lie on your left side with your left knee bent and your right leg straight
■ Place your elbow directly underneath your shoulder
■ Ensure that you have a straight line between your shoulders, hips and knees
■ Lift your hips off the floor
■ Hold this position as the starting position
■ Lift your right leg up as high as you can – slightly higher than your hips is optimum
■ Lower your leg until your foot touches the floor
Safety tip:
Keep your core muscles contracted.

RESISTANCE BAND KNEE BOUNCING

Areas trained: thighs (quadriceps, hamstrings)

13220113_166412917089990_1332436556_n
Why do it?
This works through a pain-free zone for most people and will improve neuromuscular (communication between brain and muscle)
stimulation to your knee.

Technique:
■ Tie a resistance band in a big loop around a pole
■ Stand with your feet hip-width apart facing the pole and place your left leg inside the loop
■ Keep the band behind your knee
■ Bend your left knee to put your weight on to the ball of your left foot
■ Straighten your leg and tense your front thigh muscles (quadriceps)
Safety tip: Keep a tall posture and don’t look down.

RESISTANCE BAND LYING ABDUCTION

Areas trained: outer thigh (abductors)

13081998_166412827089999_866224223_n

Why do it?
Improving the strength in your outer thighs will improve your ability to run over uneven terrain.

Technique:
■ Lie on your left side on the floor
■ Tie a resistance band around your thighs
■ Lift your top leg up
■ Hold the top position for a few seconds
■ Lower your leg with control
■ Complete one set before switching sides
Safety tip:
Always keep tension on the resistance band.

SINGLE-LEG QUARTER SQUATS OFF A LOW STEP

Areas trained: thighs, bottom, balance (quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes)

13219979_166412963756652_1898617831_n
Why do it?
This will improve muscle strength while keeping the knee within a 30-degree bend. It normally doesn’t cause pain and it will improve your neuromuscular communication.

Technique:
■ Stand with your left leg on a low step
■ Allow your right leg to hang next to the step
■ Pull your toes up on your right foot
■ Bend your left knee, lowering until your right heel touches the floor
■ Return to the standing position
■ Complete one set before changing sides
Safety tip:
If currently recovering from a knee injury, stay within a pain-free zone.

SPLIT SQUAT WITH YOUR BACK FOOT ON A STEP

Areas trained: thighs, bottom, hip flexors, balance (quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, piriformis muscle)

13187623_166412977089984_436148313_n
Why do it?
Doing single-leg exercises will ensure that both legs develop
the same amount of strength to prevent future injuries.

Technique:
■ Stand on your right leg
■ Place your left foot behind you on a high step or bench
■ Bend your standing (right) knee and lower your left knee to
the ground
■ Return to the standing position
■ Complete one set before changing over to the other side
Safety tip:
Only lower to a comfortable level

SINGLE-LEG STEP BRIDGE

Areas trained: rear thighs, bottom, hip flexors, balance (quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, piriformis muscle)

13219976_166413003756648_1803161263_nWhy do it?
To prevent knee injuries, it’s important to prevent an imbalance between your front and rear thighs.

Technique:
■ Lie on your back
■ Place your left heel on a step or bench
■ Extend your right leg up to the ceiling
■ Lift your hips off the floor to form a straight line between your knee, hips
and shoulders
■ Slowly lower back down but don’t rest your bottom on the floor
Safety tip:
Keep your hips level when lifting.

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