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Strengthen your knee
- Masoom Parmar

September 7, 2013

1. Stretch your IT Band:
a. Stand with your left foot crossed over your right. Lean your upper body as far as you can to the left without bending your knees. Repeat with your right foot crossed over your left, leaning your upper body to the right.

b. Sit on the floor with your legs stretched in front of you. Cross one over the other and pull your knee as close as you can toward your chest, holding it in place for a few seconds. Repeat with your other leg.

2. Strengthen your Quadriceps, Hamstrings and Gluteus
a. Do lunges to work on your quadriceps. Stand upright with your hands on your hips. Take a big step forward with your left foot, and lower your body toward the floor until your left leg is bent at a right angle. Your back knee will lower until it is nearly touching the floor. Repeat this exercise several times, and then switch to the other side.

b. Lie down on your back. Place a towel roll underneath your knee and press it. Hold it for a count of 30 seconds. Repeat 5 times on each side. Increase the number of repetitions and the holding time gradually.

c. Strengthen your hamstrings with step-ups. Stand in front of a raised surface and practice stepping up with one foot, then the other. Repeat on both sides.

d. Do squats to get stronger gluteus. Stand upright and simply squat to the ground, bending your knees and keeping your back upright. For a less strenuous version of this exercise, practice standing in front of a chair, sitting and standing again.

3. Yoga, swimming, brisk walking and cycling also help strengthen your knee

4. Change your eating habits:
a. Include foods that are known to be anti-inflammatory (Fish, flax seeds, olive oil, avocados, and whole fruits and vegetables) to your diet.

b. Consume milk and milk products.

c. Vitamin E is believed to hinder enzymes that break down the cartilage in the joints. Spinach, broccoli, peanuts, mango and kiwi are excellent sources of vitamin E.

Masoom Parmar is the administrator at Bangalore based Nritarutya Dance Company. He is a physiotherapy undergraduate and a dancer with a keen interest in arts management.

Thanks for being a source of valuable health advice. Looking forward to incorporating these knee-strengthening exercises into my routine and exploring more health wisdom from your blog. Cheers!
- Prachi Mehta (Feb 15, 2024)

Very useful article for all especially for Bharatanatyam dancers who tend to have knee pain more often due to the strenuous footwork in aramandi (half sitting position)
-V Soumyasri, Aurangabad (Oct 9, 2015)

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