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5 Exercises That Are Easy On The Knees But High On Impact

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Look, there’re no magical shoes that’ll lower your marathon time more effectively than training a little harder will. But what if your training itself makes your knees want to beg for mercy?    

Exercise isn’t a no-pain, no-gain deal. It can cause discomfort but it shouldn’t hurt for a long period of time. In a situation like this, it is wise to either rely on a low-impact workout for fitness or see a doctor.  

Here are some highly effective easy-on-the-knees exercises you can try to stay fit

1. Lateral Walk

Stepping laterally targets the butt and hip muscles. 

● Start in a partial squat position.

● Take a giant step to your right with your right foot, then follow with your left.

● Take a few steps in the same direction. 

● Now, step with your left foot followed by right until your return to the starting position. 

If you still experience knee pain while working out, wear a knee cap for better support.

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2. Kettlebell Swing 

Knee pain can also be a result of weakness in the glutes and hamstrings. The kettlebell swing is a great exercise to target those.

● Grip the kettlebell handle with both hands and stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.

● Bend your knees to reach the partial squat position. 

● Hinge forward at the hips to drop the kettlebell between your legs.

● Stand back up and use the momentum towing the to chest height. 

Pro tip: Don’t lock your knees as you stand and make sure your gym bag contents are updated. It shows commitment. 

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3. Calf Raises aka Toe Raises

This one strengthens your calf muscles and increases balance. But along with that, calf raises are also good for the joints, they’re injury-proof and very helpful in increasing running speed. 

● Stand with your feet hip-width apart. 

● Raise your heels off the ground, then slowly come back to the platform while maintaining the balance.

● You can hold a dumbbell in each hand to improvise.

● Do 3 sets of 15-20 reps. 

Pro tip: For better impact, do single-leg explosive calf raises on stairs and wear ultralight socks in summer to avoid smelly feet while at it.

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4. Bridge On Ball

Doing bridges on a ball or glute bridges can activate your entire hip and butt area without putting any pressure on the knees.

● Lie on your back with your hands at your side and straight legs resting on top of a stability ball.

● Squeeze your glutes and abs and press your heels into the ball as you lift your hips off the floor. 

● Try to form a straight line from your feet to your shoulders.

● Take a pause of a few seconds.

● Squeeze your glutes at the top, then slowly lower your hips to return to the starting position.

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5. Inner & Outer Thigh Leg Lifts

Thigh leg lifts are great for strengthening and toning your thighs. While working out, make sure you tighten your abs to increase the intensity of the exercise without hurting your knees.

● Lie on the floor to your side and straighten your bottom leg. 

● Bend your top leg and prop your head up with your hand.

● Keep the core tight and target the inner thigh while lifting your bottom leg up and slowly set it back to the floor without moving your back. 

● Repeat with the other leg after 15 reps. 

● For outer thigh leg lifts, straighten your top leg and repeat the process.

Pro tip: Always wear shoes with supportive cushioning while working out. This will decrease the pressure on your knees.

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Final Thoughts

Cycling is another go-to exercise for people who are worried about their joints but enjoy high-impact workouts like running.

Knowing your weaknesses only makes you stronger. So stay active, choose your workout wisely and enjoy it! 

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