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4 Exercises That Are Easy on the Knees

Walking and running are some of the simplest but most effective exercises that you can do to achieve a healthier lifestyle. However, with running comes possible knee problems. What specific exercises for knee pain can you do if you’re suffering from knee complications and injuries to maintain your optimal health?

Today we’ll be looking at the best knee pain exercises to help you get back on track. Here are four physical activities you can perform to shed those extra pounds and maintain your well-being.


Swimming is one of the best exercises for knee pain and other injuries since it’s a low-impact activity. Your buoyancy will take most of the weight out of your knees as you move in the water.

A 2016 study showed that people with osteoarthritis and suffering from joint pains could greatly benefit from swimming regularly. It decreases their discomfort while improving their mobility. Swimming is also a great way to burn fat, especially if you scale the intensity, duration, and efficiency of your workout.

It will also depend on which stroke you prefer during your swimming sessions. While the freestyle stroke has the best potential to burn the most calories, other styles can still do wonders for your body. Always make sure to be consistent with your progress to burn those extra pounds while still addressing your joint problems.

Elliptical Trainer

The elliptical is another safe and low-impact knee pain exercise that you can do. This machine is a great alternative to walking and jogging as you can do it in the comfort of your home. It also puts less stress on your knees, hips, and back.

Going around on the elliptical requires about the same physical demand as a treadmill. Moreover, some ellipticals are equipped with pole-like handles, allowing you to exercise both your legs and arms as you move. You can also increase its resistance to help you burn more fat and tone your muscles. 

Keep your head straight, pull your shoulders back, and engage your core as you go into the elliptical to maintain proper form. Don’t lean on the handles so your body can get used to supporting its own weight as you exercise.

Knee-strengthening Exercises

Knee-strengthening exercises like squats and similar routines can also help reduce knee pains. It also strengthens the surrounding muscles as you perform these workouts. Toning your muscles also lets them support your joints better.

Wall squats are one of the best knee pain exercises as they are beginner-friendly. Here’s how to do it:

  • Stand with your back against the wall. Make sure your head, shoulders, back, and hips are pressed tightly on the surface of the wall.
  • Distance your feet about 24 inches from the wall while making sure your back and shoulders are stable against it.
  • Slide down the wall until your body is just above a normal sitting position.
  • Make sure your knees don’t go past your toes.
  • Hold your squatting position for five seconds while tightening your abdominal muscles.
  • Return to your neutral position before going back down again.
  • Do five to ten repetitions if you’re a beginner. You can also increase your reps to up to 15 times as you progress. 


If you want to have variety with your knee exercises, you can try out cycling. You can go for a stationary bike at first to see if your knees can handle it. Keep in mind to do this transition slowly so your knees won’t get overwhelmed.

Follow these tips to maintain proper form whenever you do stationary cycling:

Adjust your seat properly

Place the heel of your foot on the lowest point of the pedal. Keep your knees straight to get your proper footing. Turn the pedal with the ball of your foot while bending your knee at a 25-30-degree angle.

Don’t lean too far back or too far forward

Your shoulders, back, and hips should be aligned as you pedal. Leaning too far back will strain your back, while putting too much weight forward can hurt your neck and shoulders.

A good indication that you’re leaning too far forward is being aware of your hands. If your hands start to go numb, that means it’s taking too much of your weight. Shift your weight accordingly to lessen the burden on these areas.

Start at a low resistance first

Similar to conventional road bikes, you can adjust the pedal resistance of your stationary bike. The amount of resistance that you can handle depends on your goals and current condition. Get your body accustomed to cycling first before swiftly increasing your pedal resistance. You can then perform different workouts with varying intensity to prevent further injury.

Jump Rope

For most people, jump rope isn’t the first activity that comes to mind when talking about knee pain exercises. That’s unsurprising since jump rope is quite a demanding workout.

Jump rope may look simple and childish at first, but it can be a rigorous cardio workout. It’s a relatively low-impact exercise that can also strengthen your joints and relieve your knee pains. However, the intensity will depend on how fast you’re handling the rope and the surface you’re jumping on.

Concrete, for instance, will be demanding on your joints every time you land. But a wooden flooring or a basketball court is more ideal for jump rope. If concrete is the only option available to you, try to get a jump rope mat to soften the surface.

You’ll also need to keep an eye out for your form. Do not bend your knees too much when you’re jumping. Instead, perform a low skip with a slight bend on your knees while flicking the rope using your wrist so it quickly passes below your feet.

What’s more, you should keep your back straight and your arms close to your side while doing this knee pain exercise. Avoid making unnecessary movements and keep it as simple as possible so you can also conserve your energy.

You can improve your jump rope skills by following these simple steps:

  • Jump and land using the balls of your feet
  • Flick the rope with your wrist
  • Keep your back straight
  • Engage your core for better stability as you jump

For more exercise and health advice, visit the LiftClinic blog today.

Dr. Reza Alizadeh

Dr. Reza is the visionary behind LifeClinic. His leadership is the foundation for the patient and team member experience, and overall direction of the LifeClinic. As the creator of IMJT, Dr. Reza continues to be the primary teacher on this technique.

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