STRETCH THOSE KNEES. . .PLEASE!

Calf stretches aid in relieving pain in the soleus and gastrocnemius muscles (lower back leg) .

Calf stretches aid in relieving pain in the soleus and gastrocnemius muscles (lower back leg) .

Here are some simple static stretches that you can do to prevent knee injury. Remember, static stretching is better after a workout or long run.  Static stretching keeps your legs from locking up and becoming tight.  Your knees are also associate with the front, side and middle of your legs.  Those muscles support the knee and if they are not stretched properly, it's a chain reaction and your legs will compensate one thing at a time if they are not taken care of.  Never be to tired after a workout to get these stretches in. 

 

itb_stretch.jpg

Ilitotibial Band Stretch

1) Stand upright.

2) Cross the injured leg behind the opposite leg.

3) Lean to the non injured side until a stretch is 

felt across the outside of your thigh region.

4) Hold for 30 seconds.

5) Repeat five times.

quad-stretch.jpg

Quadricep Stretch

1) While standing, hold onto a counter 

top or chair back to assist in balance.

2) Bend your knee back by grasping 

your ankle with one hand.

3) Assist in bending your knee back as far as possible.

4) Maintain this position for 30 seconds.

5) Return to standing position.

6) Repeat the exercise 5 times with each leg.

473_1.jpg

Hamstring Stretch

1) Sit on the floor with both legs out straight.

2) Extend your arms and reach forward, bending at the waist as far as possible while keeping your knees straight.

3) Hold this position for 10 seconds. Relax.

4) Repeat this exercise 5 more times.

Calf Stretch

1) Sit with your feet our in front of you.

2) Hold one end of a sheet or towel in each hand, forming a loop.

3) Place the loop around your foot.

4) Pull your toes toward you.

5) Stop when you feel a comfortable stretch in your calf muscle.

6) Hold for 20 seconds, and repeat 5 more times.

7) Switch legs and repeat. 

Knee injuries are the most common injury, not only in runners but with any active person.  Make sure you take care of your knees before, during and after a good workout to prevent future hiccups along the way!

Happy Running and HARD Training!