Many people are now starting to use step-up exercises for bad knees since they have been shown to be very effective in terms of pain relief. This is because these exercises not only strengthen the muscle that supports your knee but also improve your balance and coordination. This is a common issue for people who have had or are experiencing knee problems and this is why they are now turning to different types of exercises to help with the problem. Basically, step-ups involve you standing on two chairs which have a small platform at the bottom of each one. You then do a series of ups or just stand there while balancing on these platforms.
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Also known as the morning walk, good mornings are very effective knee exercises. The exercise is very simple – all you need is a flat floor surface and a set of dumbbells. Stand straight with both feet on the floor and take one dumbbell in each hand and position them across your chest. Then lean back against the edge of a chair or table and slowly lower the weights down to your knees. This should last about three counts. Do not rush through this workout but instead allow it to build up to a full speed.
Another effective quad exercises for bad knees routine is done by lying flat on a bench or bed. With your legs straight, lift your body up to about hip height and slowly lower yourself back down to the original position. Do as many reps as you can and progress with these reps slowly. As you get stronger, increase the number of reps you do until you reach about six.
Shoulder Width Lifts
This exercise isolates the quads and works out the upper and middle deltoids only. To do this exercise, lay flat on an exercise mat with your feet shoulder width apart. With your hands directly under your hips, lift your body off the mat to a standing position. Now lower yourself slowly to the starting position and repeat. For each arm, do half reps.
Other leg and thigh exercises for quads that are commonly overlooked by athletes and fitness trainers are squats, lunges, and calf raises. Lunges work out not only the quadriceps but also the hamstrings. Calf raises work out the calves as well as the thighs. Squats strengthen the gluteal muscles of the buttocks. All these exercises should be included in any comprehensive quadriceps strengthening exercises routine.
Isometric Quad Holds
Quadriceps exercises should also include a variety of static isometric quad holds. Static isometric quad holds mimic the action of actually taking the weight of your entire body onto your legs. The key to performing isometric quad holds is holding the position for several seconds at maximum effort. Do not attempt to do sets with heavy weights.
Exercises for quads that also target the calves but not the hamstrings include the walking-leg curls, the plank exercise, and the heel raise. For beginners and those with limited flexibility, it is advisable to start with light weights and high reps. Gradually increase the weight and rep range as your fitness progresses. A simple way to increase your ability to withstand pain is by using a foot or ankle weight resistance band. Heavy weights and higher-rep reps will result in an increased strain on the joints. The band helps reduce the pain by providing additional support and conditioning your body.
Seated Hamstring Curls
Doing seated hamstring’s curls is another important exercise to add to your workout regimen. This exercise targets the gluteus maximus, which is responsible for a wide array of hip flexion and knee pain problems, including plantar fasciitis, iliotibial band syndrome, and iliopsoas syndrome. To perform this exercise, simply lay down flat on a workout bench and place a weight plate across your hips. Then, raise your legs straight up to your chest and make sure they are straight with each step. Lower the weight slowly and repeat two more times.