Staying in shape is important, but something that is more important is staying healthy. While exercising is good for strengthening muscles and toning your body, there are some exercises that cause wear and tear to your body parts, particularly the knees. If you already have bad knees, or want to avoid getting to that point, here are some tips for exercises that can help or hurt your precious knees.
Avoiding knee injuries and knee stress is not that difficult, for there are many options of exercises that do not cause harmful stress to the knees. To start things off, make sure you do some warm up stretches. Stretching will literally warm your body up, which studies have shown can be very beneficial to injury prevention. So make sure you pull those legs into your chest, reach down and grab those toes, and after you are good and warmed up you will be ready for some exercises.
Good exercises for the knees include wall sits, body bridges, leg lifts where you lie on your back and lift your legs straight up without bending the knees, and simple calf raises off of a step. All of the aforementioned exercises will tone your leg muscles as well as your core, but they don’t put additional stress on your knees that will cause much harm. Water exercises as well as elliptical exercises are also great options, for they involve fluid motions that also don’t cause harmful stress.
Just as there are many options for exercises that are healthy for your knees, there are perhaps just as many that are harmful to them. You should avoid doing deep squats, especially when there is added weight involved, and if you participate in the Zumba workout program you should avoid the knee twist exercises as well. If your knees are already particularly bad, avoid lunges and hurdler’s stretches, because they too add stress to the knees that can cause much damage.