Exercise Is Medicine
Surely we know that exercise can not fix everything, but it is fascinating and reassuring to know that exercising can often help. Instead of just sitting in front of a screen, start moving and you will be surprised how much better you feel.
We Need More Active Role-models
Don’t let age get in your way! This lady here had plans to go to Alaska for some hiking, but started to have hip and knee issues. Instead of cancelling her plans, she went to her doctor and got some PT sessions prescribed.
After following them for several weeks, she told me last week she is doing much better. She said she would not mind sharing her exercises with us.
Hip+Knee Exercises with Small Equipment
My favorite exercises are those which can be done regardless where you are. With small equipment and easy instructions.
Exercise #1: Knee Extensions with Foamroller
Start on your back, ideally with a foam roller underneath your knees. Tighten your quads and lift one foot off the ground by extending the knee. Bring the lower leg in extension of the upper leg, but keep both knees connected to the foam roller. The non-moving foot stays on the floor. Hold for 2s and return to the start.
Exercise #2. Hip Bridges with Band
Wrap a resistance band around your thighs, right above your knees. Start on your back, both knees bent and feet parallel on the floor. Tighten your glutes, and bring your hips off the mat. Lift your hips until a straight line between your knees, hips and shoulders form. Hold for 2s and return to the start.
Exercise #3. Clamshells with Band
Continue strengthening your gluteus muscles by keeping the band wrapped around your thighs. This time you start on your side, knees bent 90 degrees, head rested on your arm. Activate your glutes, lift the upper knee, but keep the feet together. Hold the open position for 2s, then slowly lower back your knee to the start.
Exercise #4. Weighted Leg Lifts Sideways
For this hip adduction exercise, take off the resistance band, and put on ankle weights instead. Come back into a side position, head rested on your arms. This time extend the upper leg while the lower leg stays bent. Hold the extended position for 2s, then slowly lower the upper leg back to the start.
Exercise #5. Weighted Leg Lifts
Keep the ankle weights on, and lay down on your back. Bend one knee 90 degrees and put the foot flat on the floor. Keep the other leg extended and lift off until both thighs are parallel. Tighten your core and and squeeze your glutes while your leg goes through the move. Hold the parallel position for 2s, then slowly lower the extended leg back to the start.
Step It Up Gradually
For each exercise, build up to 3 rounds of 10-15 repetitions of each leg.
Start with an easy effort and add repetitions and rounds over time!