When you struggle with frequent knee pain, or joint discomfort, the chances are you recognize the fact that you need to do something to strengthen the muscles and ligaments supporting your knee if you want to reduce the symptoms, and stave off future problems. However, many people forget that it's not just your knee that you need to focus on, but all of your lower body muscles.
In recent years, research has progressively shown that there is a connection between weak hips, and the condition known as "runner's knee" - wherein individuals suffer from a dull, and chronic ache around the kneecap. While your knee compress sleeve might help you to reduce some of the discomfort you feel, the chances are that you'll also benefit from an exercise routine that focuses on strengthening both your hips, and your core.
Combatting Weak Hips to Relieve Runners Knee
If you've found yourself suffering from painful kneecaps recently, committing to a hip strengthening regimen at least two or three times a week should help to relieve runners knee, and reduce your chances of falling victim to it again in the future. Not only does this mean that you'll experience fewer injuries thanks to a better-stabilized core, but it can also mean that you run faster when on the track, and perform better in other sports too.
The best exercises to relieve runners knee include:
1. Side Leg Raises
Start by lying on your side with your legs stacked atop one another. Carefully lift your top leg up and away from the other, towards the ceiling until you create a forty-five-degree angle. Once you have held the position for a moment, gradually lower the leg back down, and repeat around twenty times per leg.
2. Bird Dog
This might seem like a fake workout, but it's really good when you want to relieve runners knee. Simply get on all fours on the ground (using a mat for comfort), then raise your right arm and extend it out in front of your body, while lifting your left leg and stretching it out behind your body. Bring both the arm and knee back into the center of your body, then stretch them out again, for about twenty reps on each side.
3. Hip Hikes
Standing on a single foot, drop the right side of your pelvis down a couple of inches, while keeping the left side in a natural position. Use the muscles in the left side of your hip to lift your right side back to the normal pose, and repeat twenty times on each side.
4. Single Leg Bridges
Lie on your back with your feet flat against the ground and both legs bent. Lift your right leg away from the ground and stretch it outwards while raising your back and buttocks, then hold the position for a couple of seconds before lowering back to the floor. Repeat about fifteen times on each leg.
5. Donkey Kicks
Finally, on all fours again, lift and extend only your legs, keeping your hands on the ground and kicking your feet up and backwards as best you can without losing your balance. Try to make sure you don't accidentally land on your knees here, as this won't help to relieve runners knee.