Knee Pain after Exercise: Treatment and Prevention

There are many reasons why you suffer from knee pain, but not all of them are serious. You may have a touch of bursitis or tendinitis or you may have some major issues going on such as cartilage damage or ligament tears. Knee pain can affect the way you walk and how you stand up after being seated. Many times you will find your knees locking up if you have been seated for a while. Whenever you begin a new exercise program you may experience some joint pain in the beginning but if it continues longer than 2 weeks you may want to contact your physician.

Why Do You Experience Knee Pain After Exercise?

1. Overuse of the Knees

If your exercise program includes exercises that put a lot of stress on the kneecap, you may experience knee pain after exercise. If your tendons have been overstretched you may end up with runner's knees.

2. Trauma to the Knees

You may experience knee pain if you have suffered a direct trauma to the knee such as a blow or a fall. If you suspect that you have a knee trauma, just get your knee fixed and contact your doctor immediately, which can avoid further pain or skeletal issues.

3. Out of Alignment

If your knees are out of alignment, your body weight will not be evenly distributed. This will cause certain parts of your body to endure undue stress and the kneecap may be pushed out of position. That's why you experience knee pain after exercise.

4. Foot Problems

Problems with your feet may lead to a runner's knee which in turn can cause a condition that affects the joints, creates fallen arches, or you could end up with flat feet. Any of these situations can create stress on your joints as well as the tissues around the knee.

5. Muscle Imbalance on Thighs

Any time your body is out of balance there will be some parts that have less stress and others that have twice as much as the stress. The same way goes to the body muscles. The weak muscle body parts will shoulder more stress than those parts with strong muscles. When you have little muscles on thighs, the kneecaps may experience substantial pains and creating abnormal foot patterns.

6. Other Causes

Finding out the knee pain location helps to figure out the cause. For example, if you have pain in the front of your knees you may have arthritis or bursitis. Any pain that emanates from the side of the knee could be the result of an injured ligament. Pain after exercise as you get older could be the result of osteoarthritis.

How to Relieve Knee Pain After Exercise

1. Post-Exercise Caring Routine

One of the first things you should do within 20 minutes after your exercising is to put ice on your sore knee. This will cool down the inflammation. You could also take medications like ibuprofen to reduce inflammation after exercise. If your pain persists after a few days, you should refrain from exercising for a couple of days and check in with your doctor.

2. Alternate High and Low Impact Exercises

When you perform high-impact exercises such as volleyball, basketball or running, your knees are the main strength and shock absorbers when you come down on them. To relieve your knee pain, you should switch between high impact exercises and low impact exercises, such as yoga, swimming or an elliptical machine.

3. Do Exercises to Strengthen Your Knees

If you have already checked with a physician and you are sure your pain is not from an injury, you might want to try some stretching exercises. One exercise can be started in a sitting position, then stretch out the legs and lift them off the ground about 6 to 8 inches in a slow motion. You can repeat this exercise on each leg for 5 to10 times.

Another exercise you can try while sitting down with your legs stretched out and cross one leg over the other, which helps stretch outer parts of your knees. Try to hold this position for about 5 seconds.

4. Know When to Stop

If you continue to experience knee pain after exercising, stop right away and give your knee a chance to rest. Also, put your knee in time out. Refrain from doing any activities and put your leg up on a pillow so your knee is elevated and there is no weight on it at all.

5. Adjust Your Exercise Program Gradually

Do some changes on your program helping to deal with the knee pain, but make sure you don't change too much to your exercise routine one time. Usually, it‘s recommended to change one factor each week like duration, frequency, or intensity. For instance, if you want to add one more physical day of your program, then your weekly routine should perform in a steady pace rather than a too urgent pace.

6. Maintain a Normal Weight

Control your body weight between normal ranges. For every extra pound of weight you are carrying on your body, it puts 4 pounds of extra weight on your knees. Try to get your extra weight off as quickly as you can to release the stress on your knees.

 

Here is a video helping you figure out how to ease knee pain after exercise:

Prevention – Tips to Prevent Further Injuries

  • Conditioning exercise can be essential before starting a program. If you are preparing for a new sport season or a vigorous program, it is recommended to incorporate a workout program from 4 to 6 weeks before beginning a sport program.
  • Start out slow and build up your stamina little by little. Do not start a new routine that goes longer than one hour when first starting out.
  • Make sure you have sports shoes that give you the proper support to the foot and arch. Change them out every 6 months.
  • Start out with a 15-minute warmup before starting sporting activity: jog for around 5 or 10 minutes to get your blood circulating then incorporate some static stretches; stretch both in static and dynamic.
  • Just as important as a warmup is a cool down routine so your body doesn't just cease to move. Slow it down for a couple of exercises by walking slowly and stretching.
  • Use kneepads to protect your knees in case you fall or become injured.
 
 
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