Knee pain is common if you have osteoarthritis and other joint issues, and it’s likely to increase when you’ve been sitting in one place for a while. However, you can’t always get up and move around when the pain hits.
Fortunately, physical therapists have an answer that can help you: therapeutic exercises. These exercises are intended to stretch and strengthen muscles around the knee. They can also help increase the lubrication in your knee joint. Many of the therapeutic exercises that your physical therapist may recommend for knee pain can be done when you’re sitting down. Some of these exercises are:
1. Seated leg extensions
Purpose: This knee pain exercise is intended to move your knee joint and improve the strength of your quad muscles when you’re sitting down.
How to perform the seated leg extension exercise:
- Sit with upright posture, your feet flat on the floor and your knees bent.
- Lift your left foot off the floor by straightening your left knee.
- When you’ve lifted your leg as high as you can, squeeze your quads for three to five seconds.
- Slowly lower your foot back to the floor.
- Repeat the exercise with your left leg until you’ve done 10 to 15 repetitions; then switch legs and do the same number of reps with your right leg.
2. Seated hamstring contractions
Purpose: This exercise is designed to be done when sitting down, and it can help strengthen your hamstring muscles and decrease knee pain.
How to perform the seated hamstring contraction exercise:
- Sit in your chair with upright posture.
- Place your feet flat on the floor.
- Straighten your left leg slightly and lift your toes so that your right heel is resting on the floor.
- Squeeze your hamstring muscles and push your heel down into the floor.
- Hold the contraction for 10 seconds.
- Switch legs and repeat the exercise.
- Continue to repeat this exercise until you’ve done three to five repetitions with each leg.
3. Sit to stand exercise
Purpose: This therapeutic exercise works to strengthen all the muscles that are working when you’re standing up or sitting down, and it can also help ease arthritis-related knee pain.
How to perform the sit to stand exercise:
- Sit up straight with your feet flat on the floor.
- Tighten your abs, buttocks and leg muscles.
- Slowly lift yourself out of the chair. You can use your arms to help you by pushing against the chair’s armrests if needed.
- Slowly lower yourself back into the chair.
- Repeat this exercise eight to 10 times.
Find more ways to treat knee pain when sitting at Arrow PTR
You don’t have to just live with knee pain when sitting. Our Arrow Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation team is ready and willing to help you find ways to address your pain. We offer free screenings designed to reveal the cause of your pain. Also, our physical therapists are adept at building therapy plans that are unique to each patient’s needs. Even better, you can sign up for an at-home care or virtual therapy appointment with us that allows you to treat your pain from home.
Contact our team today for more information about how we can treat your knee pain or to schedule your initial appointment.