If you are experiencing knee pain, try these exercises to help relieve your pain. Remember to always see a orthopedic doctor if you experience knee pain that is not relieved by several days of rest, ice, massage, and elevation.
Hamstring stretch: Standing, put one foot in front of you, toes up. With hands on the small of your back (or one hand holding a chair for balance), bend the opposite knee and hip (not your lower back), until you feel the hamstrings stretch. The upper body comes forward at the hip. Hold for 5 -10 seconds, then release. Repeat 5 times on each leg.
Lying Hamstring Stretch: Lie flat on your back. Bend the knee on the leg to be stretched and hold the back of your thigh with one hand and the back of your calf with the other. Use your hands to pull the leg towards you keeping the knee bent about 20° until you feel a strong stretch in the middle of your thigh (at the back). Hold for 30 seconds. Repeat 3 times, 2x daily, or before and after exercise. Tip: If you can’t reach your leg to pull it, hook a towel around your leg and pull that instead to achieve a good hamstring stretch.
Knee flexion: Sitting in a chair, loop a long towel under your foot (resting on the floor). Gently pull on the towel with both hands to bend the knee, raising your foot 4 – 5 inches off the floor. Hold for 5 – 10 seconds, then release. Repeat 5 times on each leg.
Straight Leg Lift: Begin lying on back with right leg straight and extended; left knee is bent, with left foot flat on floor. Contract right thigh muscles to straighten (but not lock) the knee. Slowly raise leg until knees are parallel, then lower. Repeat 8 to 12 times, working up to 2 sets on each side.
Knee-to-Chest Stretch: Lie on your back with your knees bent. Bring one knee into your hands and gently let your arms pull your knee toward your chest. Hold, then lower your bent leg. Repeat with other leg.