Skip to main content

Love hiking??..Take care of your knees newbies..

Oh yes! Hiking is new cool! Many of us, otherwise couch potatoes are finding their way off to treks on weekends.. It is definitely a very good idea to burn those extra calories from "extra cheese burgers". But guys watch out for your knees.

As with many of us, exercising on weekdays is not always possible due to hectic schedule. So, practically you are losing muscle mass by inactivity on weekdays, sitting for more than 6 hours a day has lot of negative effects not only on heart and lungs but also on muscular-skeletal systems.

And it doesn’t end there; performing physically challenging activities needs lot of muscle strength and endurance, when you have poor strength; the stress starts coming on joints in motion and their degeneration starts faster.

Hiking in particular needs lot of muscle strength in quadriceps and hamstrings muscles of the knee. When these muscles are stronger they can take care of portion of load coming on the knee, this ensures improved physical performance, delayed fatigue and most importantly slowing down of joint wear out. 

These muscle groups along with calf and hip muscles are required for hiking and balancing. Weakness or tightness in any of these muscle structures causes undue stress on knee joint leading to knee pain.

What to do to avoid knee joint pain on trekking?

EXERCISE!
*     Follow these simple exercises daily at least once a day. Start with these exercises minimum 3 weeks before the trek to build muscle strength. For better results, start earliest and increase exercise intensity gradually.

Knee press: 
Keep a towel roll under your knee and press the knee down on a roll.




Straight leg raise: Lay flat on back, lift your leg straight up.

Side lying leg raise:In side lying pose, lift your upper leg straight up.

Hams curls: Lie on your stomach and bend your knee.

Sitting quadriceps contraction:
 
 Raise your lower leg up, while keeping the thigh steady.

Half squats: Squat down from knees but don’t go beyond 90 degrees. (Mini squats)

Wide squats

Front lunges:
Take wall support, bend your right knee while keeping left leg straight. Repeat with left leg.  


 Quads stretching:
Stand with support and pull thigh backwards from ankle, while keeping the back straight.

Hams stretching:   In long sitting pose, try to reach the toes keeping your back straight.


       FOOTWEAR!
*     Wear comfortable footwear while on hiking.

·        Choose pair of shoes which are light weight but give good stability on uneven terrain.
·        Medial arch support is recommended, as it gives stability to mid-foot and avoids excess strain on ankle muscles.
·        Nowadays, hiking shoes with ankle support are available, one can go for those as well to have greater stability. But you need to confirm that you are not having any pressure points over ankle or else you will end having shoe bites.
·        Check out for toe space. It is one of the very crucial aspects when buying shoes. You should be able to move your toes in the shoe when you are wearing it snugly.
·        Buying right pair of socks is definitely important. Socks should provide mid arch support. It will be a good idea to wear sports socks which are knee high.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

EXERCISING IN RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS

When in you are in pain, getting list of exercises from your physiotherapy doctor and building fit musculature is the last thing on your mind! But believe me exercises have a great role, not only in reducing pain but also to avoid deformities and joint complications that may arise with arthritis. In this article, I am going to discuss about how we can prevent joint deformities and pain in small joints of hand and feet. Before we do that, let us have a quick view of how exercises can help you in arthritis and save your joints.   ( Benefits of exercises ) Regular exercises mean, ü   Less pain from arthritis:- ·          Exercises help in improving blood circulation, more blood flow means more nutrients and oxygen to working muscles and joint. Improved blood flow helps removing toxic products from the tissues. ·          Working muscles are more flexible and stronger. Stronger the muscle less is the pressure on the joint and this in turn slows down joint wear and tear. 

How to prevent worsening of knee pain?

Knee joint pain is one of the most common joint injury. It can be caused by sudden jerk, overuse or by underlying condition like arthritis. Symptoms of knee injury can include pain, swelling and stiffness. Knee joint has the main function to bend, straighten and bear weight of the body. Knee joint is more than just the hinge joint as it can twist and rotate to some extent. In order to have this balance of stability and flexibility, knee joint relies on its ligaments and cartilage.  Knee joint involves  4 bones. Thigh bone, two bones of lower legs, and a knee cap. The joint has four main ligaments out of which ACL provides front and back rotational stability to the knee, which is why it is most commonly injured ligament in the knee. The joint surface of the knee is covered by cartilage which produces joint fluid to have smooth movements in the joint line. The joint also has to menisci, which are shock absorbing cushions in the joint.  As joint has got perfect balance

WHAT TO DO IF YOU HAVE ANKLE SPRAIN?

An ankle sprain is an injury to the ligaments that connect the bones of the leg to the foot. The injury typically happens when you accidentally twist or turn your ankle in an awkward way. This can stretch or tear the ligaments that hold your ankle bones and joints together. All ligaments have a specific range of motion and boundaries that allow them to keep the joints stabilized. When ligaments surrounding the ankle are pushed past these boundaries, it causes a sprain. You should call your doctor right away if you sprain your ankle. Your doctor can determine the severity of the injury and recommend a proper course of treatment. It can take several weeks or months for a sprained ankle to heal completely. You may have a sprained ankle if you notice the following symptoms in the ankle: ·          tenderness ·          pain and swelling ·          inability to put weight on the affected ankle How is it diagnosed? Your doctor will perform a physical exam to determin