A hurt knee can be one of the most frustrating and painful injuries for anyone young or old and unfortunately it can be all too common. The knee joint takes the full weight of your body when you move, making it particularly vulnerable to injuries. Damage to ligaments, tendons or cartilage in the knee is the most likely source of pain. How can you protect your knees to avoid injuries and long-term damage?
- Lose weight
If you are overweight, then you are putting extra burden on your knees to carry this excess weight around all day. Every additional pound of weight puts 4 extra pounds of pressure on your knees when you walk, so losing weight can help to keep your knees healthy in the long run.
- Build strong legs
Strengthening the muscles in the leg through exercise helps to stabilise the knees and reduce pressure on the joint. Having strong quads, hamstrings, abductors and adductors will make knee injuries less likely.
- Exercise regularly
Contrary to popular belief, people who are active are less likely to develop long term knee problems. Most reviewed studies have found that runners and active people have a greater volume of cartilage and are less likely to develop knee arthritis than sedentary people. Physical activity is good for your joints, but it is worth noting that vigorous activity on already damaged joints can lead to further damage.
If you have injured your knees in the past, then there are certain measures you can take to avoid aggravating the joints further:
- Knee-friendly activities
Choosing sports and activities that put less pressure on your knees can help to avoid aggravating the injury. Rowing and cycling are knee-friendly as they are low impact and don’t encourage the knee to twist, which reduces the likelihood of damaging cartilage or ligaments. People with a history of injury should avoid weight-bearing activities like running. If you cycle regularly make sure your seat is fitted properly, however. A seat that is too low or too high can cause imbalances to the muscles which may hurt your knees.
- Ice and rest
If you feel pain don’t ignore it. Avoid putting much weight on your knee if it causes pain – put ice on the knee to reduce pain and swelling and rest. Trying to play through the pain barrier will often cause further damage so don’t risk it.
Compress your knee using straps or a compression sleeve offers support to your knee. This can help an injured knee recover quicker and protect it from further injury. Compression also helps to improve circulation and reduce swelling.
Follow these tips to steer clear of knee injuries and perform at your best!
For more information about the ionocore® Knee Copper Compression Sleeve, click here.
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