Category Archives for "Knee Injuries, Pain"

Anterior Cruciate Ligament Knee Injury: Roller Bridges

This exercise is a great way to strengthen and give more stability to your knee which may be weak or unstable from a previous or current injury of your Anterior Cruciate Ligament (your ACL) and is great for building your strength and balance in any sports involving jumping, running or cutting.

Lie down on your back and place a roller underneath your lower legs between your calf and ankles to start. Activate the inner core muscles of the low back and keep them engaged throughout.

To start, curl the roller towards you butt while you bend your knees. When your heels come over the roller, bridge your butt up nice and high and hold it at the end for a good long second. Then slowly bring the butt back down moving the roller towards the feet, reversing the direction of movement with control back to the start. Repeat this for 10 repetitions doing 3 sets daily.

This exercise is a great way to strengthen and give more stability to your knee which may be weak or unstable from a previous or current injury of your Anterior Cruciate Ligament (your ACL) and is great for building your strength and balance in any sports involving jumping, running or cutting.

If you experience any pain or have any problems doing this exercise consult your local Physiotherapist before continuing.

Knee Ligament Injuries – One Leg Looped Band Bridges

Wrap a looped resistance band around your thighs just above your knees. Engage the core muscles below the belly button by pulling them inwards while you keep breathing.

Ensure your knees are aligned with your ankles and your hips while you take up the slack in the looped band. Push through your heels with the feet flat on the ground and bridge the butt up keeping both sides of the pelvis level with each other.

Then straighten out one leg, hold it here for 10 seconds, and then bend your knee and lower your butt back down. Repeat this for 10 repetitions doing 3 sets daily.

This exercise progression helps to further strengthen and rehab the knee when you have a sprained ligament that is causing weakness and a decrease in use and function.

Knee Ligament Injuries: Looped Band Bridges

This exercise helps to strengthen and rehab the knee when you have a sprained ligament that is causing weakness and a decrease in use and function.

Wrap a looped resistance band around your thighs just above your knees. Engage the core muscles below the belly button by pulling them inwards while you keep breathing. Ensure your knees are aligned with your ankles and your hips while you take up the slack in the looped band.

Push through your heels with the feet flat on the ground and bridge the butt up keeping both sides of the pelvis level with each other. Hold this for 10 seconds, and then lower your butt back down. Repeat this for 10 repetitions doing 3 sets daily.

This exercise helps to strengthen and rehab the knee when you have a sprained ligament that is causing weakness and a decrease in use and function.

If you experience any pain or have any problems doing this exercise consult your local Physiotherapist before continuing.

ACL Knee Ligament Injury: 1-Leg Deadlifts

One-leg deadlifts are a great way to strengthen your entire leg and give more stability to your affected knee.

Maintain neutral posture and engage your core muscles below the belly button. Plant your entire left foot on the ground.

When you bend forward at your hips press your foot and knee straight back and reach your arms down to the floor. Remember to keep both hips level and don’t lock out or hyper extend the left knee. Repeat this for 10 repetitions for 3 sets to start on the affected side.

One-leg deadlifts are a great way to strengthen your entire leg and give more stability to your affected knee which may be weak or unstable from a previous or current ACL ligament injury and is great for building your strength and balance in any sports involving jumping, running or cutting. It can also help prevent ACL ligament injuries as well.

If you experience any pain or have any problems doing this exercise consult your local Physiotherapist before continuing.

Patella Femoral Pain Syndrome: Gluteus Medius Muscle Pistol Squats

With both sides of the pelvis level squat down on one leg sitting your butt back (like in a chair). Keep the knee over the ankle and aligned with your hip and second toe while preventing it from moving past the toes as you squat.

You also want to reach both arms out in front of you to keep balanced and bend your hips so your chest comes forward. Your weight is on your entire foot as you come back up to straight, but put the emphasis on pushing through the heel and contract your butt all the way back up.

Repeat this for 10-15 repetitions doing 3 sets on each side.

Patella Femoral Pain Syndrome is usually caused by an imbalance of the muscles in the knee and pelvis and non-optimal movement patterns throughout this system. When done properly, you can target your gluteus medius muscles with the pistol squats more effectively to help with this imbalance.

If you experience any pain or have any problems doing this exercise consult your local Physiotherapist before continuing.

Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) Injuries

What is a medial collateral ligament (MCL) sprain? 

The medial collateral ligament (MCL) is the knee ligament on the inner part of your knee. It is one of the four major knee ligaments that help stabilize the knee joint. An injury is caused when the a force is too great for the ligament to resist, thus causing an overstretch of the MCL. This can be caused by sudden movements such as a sharp change in direction, twisting the knee while the foot is planted on the ground, or a blunt force to the knee. 

Injury severity?
Grade I

The knee ligament has a slight stretch, but it doesn’t actually tear. Although the knee joint may not hurt or swell very much, a grade I sprain can increase the risk of a repeat injury. Resting from painful activity and icing the injury can be useful to subside the pain.  

Grade II

The knee ligament tears partially. Swelling and bruising around the injury site are common, and use of the knee joint is usually painful and difficult. Use of a weight-bearing brace, or supportive taping are common treatments of this sprain. A physiotherapist may also help by providing strengthening and joint exercises to guide the healing process. 

Grade III

The knee ligament fully tears. Swelling and bleeding can sometimes be present under the skin. The joint is unstable and it can be difficult to bear weight. You can also feel the knee giving way. With a grade III sprain, surrounding structures, such as the meniscus and/or ACL also become at risk of injury. A grade III sprain should be rehabilitated under the guidance of a physiotherapist and/or knee specialist. 

Prevention?

  • Improve patellofemoral alignment 
  • Improve your proprioception, agility and balance
  • Improve your walking, running, and squatting techniques 
  • Strengthen your knee, especially quadriceps and hamstrings

If you have any pain during exercises, or are unsure about what you are doing, please consult your local physiotherapist before continuing.

Healthwise Staff (2017). Medial collateral ligament injury.
Retrieved from https://www.healthlinkbc.ca/health-topics/abn2411

Knee ACL Injury: Squat Clock Reaches

This is a great exercise for developing strength, balance, and proprioception after you have sprained the ACL ligament in your knee.

Start with nice tall posture and engage your core muscles below the belly button by drawing the lower ab muscles inward toward the spine. Then, stand on one leg and hold a stick with the butt end about 2 and a half feet away. Bend down through the hips to touch the stick to the floor at the 9 O’Clock position like a grid on a clock. Come back up and then bend down to touch the end of the stick at the 10 O’Clock position.

Repeat this until you get to the 3 O’Clock position and then reverse coming back to the 9 O’Clock position again to complete the full set. When doing this exercise maintain your knee alignment with the second toe, the knee over the ankle and bend through the butt more. Do 2 full sets 2 times a day.

IT Band Syndrome

What is IT Band Syndrome?
Iliotibial Friction Syndrome is one of the most common causes of “Runner’s Knee” and can account for up to 22% of overuse injuries in runners (Worp et al., 2012). The ITB attaches to a bony protuberance on the outside of the knee, and slides back and forth across this point with movement. Repetitive sliding in this area can create excess friction, especially when the knee is bent at 30 degrees, which is the motion that commonly happens just as your foot strikes the ground while running. ITB Syndrome is typically caused by poor biomechanics due to underlying muscle imbalances, such as weak hip rotators, gluteal muscles, or core muscles. 

Symptoms of ITB Syndrome include sharp or burning pain right above the outer part of the knee, swelling over the outside of the knee, and pain during early knee bending. ITB Syndrome also worsens with continuance of running or other repetitive activities. If you detect any symptoms, the best way to get rid of ITB syndrome is to rest immediately, and take a break from running for a few days (Worp et al., 2012). 

Prevention?

  • Decrease your mileage or take a day off when you feel pain outside of your knee 
  • Walk as a warm up before you begin running
  • Replace shoes that are worn out along the outside of the sole 
  • Run on flat surfaces

Perform exercises or stretches such as the following:

Lateral Quad Stretch:

Rolling Out The IT Band:

If you have any pain during exercises, or are unsure about what you are doing, please consult your local physiotherapist before continuing.

Worp, M., Horst, N., Wijer, A., Bacx, F., & Sanden, M. (2012). Iliotibial band syndrome in runners: A systematic review. Sports Medicine. 42(11). doi:10.1007/BF03262306

Knee Sprain ACL, MCL: Bosu Ball Lateral Shuffle

One of the most common knee injuries is an anterior cruciate ligament sprain or tear.

Place your left foot onto the Bosu and push off on it shuffling it over to allow the right foot to land on the Bosu while you aim to place the left foot on the other side of the Bosu and then finish with both feet on the ground on the other side of the Bosu ball.

When you place your foot on the Bosu ball, keep your knee in line with your 2nd toe and bring your hip over the ankle so you can push off on your entire upper thigh so you avoid pushing off with just your foot. Repeat this going left to right for 1 minute for 3 sets in total.

This is great for strengthening the knee after post anterior cruciate ligament, or ACL surgery or after having sustained a minor strain to your anterior cruciate or medial collateral ligaments. If you have any pain during the exercise or are unsure about what you are doing, consult your local Physiotherapist before continuing. 

Knee Ligament Sprain: Lunge Squats

It’s important to retrain the pushing off dynamic strength in your core stability and lower quadrant after a knee ligament sprain. There are a few key points to keep in mind as you go through this exercise. First, start off with neutral posture and the core stability muscles of your lower back engaged. Then when you lunge forward you want to push off with the back leg as opposed to stepping forward with the front foot. This will allow you to work the dynamic push - off of the back leg and stabilizing aspect of the front leg to better strengthen your lower quadrant with your core stability, and to ultimately help you recover from your deficiencies so you can return to playing sports faster & doing the activities you love to do. Perform 10 reps on each side for 3 sets daily to start. If you have any pain during the exercise or are unsure about what you are doing, consult your local Physiotherapist before continuing.