Stretch your IT band.
Spending some time stretching and warming up your IT band before diving into a strenuous activity is a good way to keep your knees strong. It is the area of thicker tissue that runs from the outside of the pelvis to the outside of the knee. The IT band helps to stabilize the knee during physical activity.
1. Stand with your left foot crossed over your right and stretch your arms above your head. 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.
2. 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.
3. Ball-squeeze squat: Place a ball between your thighs and squeeze. Slowly squat down until your knees are bent 90 degrees or as low as you can. Do three sets of 10 reps.
4. Large-step lunge: Take a big step forward with one leg and lower your body until your rear knee nearly touches the floor. Bring the rear leg forward to return tot he starting position. Do three sets of eight to 10 reps.
5. 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. You can do this holding dumb bells. Do 3 sets of 15 reps.
6. Jumping Rope. Jumping the right way is good. You might want to start in front of a mirror, and make sure that you are landing with your knees slightly bent. For stronger knees, practice landing in a half-squat position with your knees bent.
7. Do low impact cardio that will, over time, strengthen your knees. Some good activities to try are yoga, swimming, walking and biking. If you’d like to try higher impact activities after this, your knees might be strong enough by then.
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