So, You Say You Have a Bad Knee?

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One of the main issues new clients come to Stretch would be “bad knees”. Knee problems are extremely common. Injuries of the knee can range from direct trauma with instant damage; to overuse that can take a long time to degrade the tissue in and around the joint. Another, somewhat less obvious cause of knee injuries is misalignment of joints above and below the knee. Paired with repetitive movements and activities like walking, running, or work-related tasks, these misalignments can lead to accelerated wearing of joint surfaces. Pilates is an excellent way to rehabilitate the knee, build strength and ease the pain.

The main set of exercises to focus on knees would be footwork on the reformer. The first few exercises that everyone starts with when they start on the reformer… toes wrapped, high half toe, heels wide, running, heels on the bar, you know all the exercises the instructors say every session while thinking about the alignment of the knees in relation to the hips, feet and ankles. Another great exercise for the knees is simply knee extension seated on the reformer, focusing on extending the knee, while you push the carriage away maintaining proper alignment with the leg. Lastly, strap work is a great set of movements for knee issues as well. Laying on the reformer with both feet in the straps for double leg lower, bending the feet into the body and pressing back out, leg circles, tracing the ‘V’, pas de chat, all that good stuff. When you focus on the knee, keeping proper alignment and strengthening the surrounding muscles while engaging your core you will see the results of less knee pain almost instantly.

Larissa Mychaskiw