Best Exercises For Your Hurt Knee

Do you have a hurt knee? Over the last 2-3 years I’ve rehabbed 100s of patella tendon issues. I’ve returned them all back to a high level of sport while being pain-free with just 4 exercises. I’ll show you below. First, if you have a quad injury, start here.

5 Best Knee Exercises for Your Hurt Knee

The patella tendon is strengthened in the same way that the muscle it connects to is (source). As the quads attach to the patella tendon, we will be targeting the quads isometrically and isotonically.

  1. Weighted quadriceps isometrics
  2. Lune isometric holds
  3. Knee over toes squats
  4. Knee over toe split squats
  5. Step ups

Weighted Quadriceps Isometrics For Knee Pain

  • Flex hard for 5 seconds
  • Relax for 10
  • 20 reps a session
  • 2 sessions per day

Lunge Isometric Holds For Knee Pain

  • Hold this position for 3 minutes straight
  • Repeat this for both legs
  • If this is not possible then complete 3 minutes in as few sets as possible (3 sets of 1 minute)
  • Complete these 3x per week

Knee Over Toes Squats For A Hurt Knee

The concept for this is simple; load the quads and move through as much motion as possible. The end goal being full ROM while under load.

  • Use a slant board or any other method of elevating the heel (weights/books under the back of the foot)
  • Having the heel elevated allows for more quad activation as the base of support shifts forward
  • Complete 3×10-12-15
  • Session one would be 10 reps. Session 2 is 12, session 3 is 15
  • At 15 reps either add or increase the weight
  • Complete 3x per week

Knee Pain?

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    Knee Over Toe Split Squats For Knee Pain

    • These are performed on both legs
    • Lead with the injured/painful leg
    • This leg will set the rep scheme
    • ie the injured side you can get 8 reps. You would then do 8 reps on the stronger side even though it may be capable of more
    • This restores balance to your knee
    • Complete 3×10-12-15
    • Session one would be 10 reps. Session 2 is 12, session 3 is 15
    • At 15 reps either add or increase the weight
    • Complete 3x per week

    Step Ups For Knee Pain

    • Same concept as the split squats, lead with weak/painful knee
    • Complete 3×10-12-15
    • Session one would be 10 reps. Session 2 is 12, session 3 is 15
    • At 15 reps either add or increase the weight
    • Complete 3x per week

    I prescribe these exercises typically at the start of a training session. If you are currently not training then this is now your training regimen for the lower body.

    The fix for hurt knee is almost always to load the quads through as full a ROM as possible. Do not do all of these exercises in a single session. It’s more volume than you need. Pick 3 at most.

    If your knee has issues with motion as a general problem, then this article is of great benefit to you. (LINK)