Knee & Leg Pain

Hi, I'm Doctor Jo, a licensed Physical Therapist and Doctor of Physical Therapy. I hope you enjoy my video demos of stretches & exercises for common injuries and syndromes. Be safe. Have fun. And I hope you feel better soon.

Top 7 MCL Sprain Treatments

There are many different MCL sprain grades. You can also have a complete MCL tear. These MCL stretches & exercises are for before surgery. If you’ve had surgery, follow the protocol given by your doctor or physical therapist.

The medial collateral ligament (MCL) is located on the inner part, of your knee. It helps add stability and strength to the knee joint.

The first MCL sprain treatment is to start off by getting mobility in the knee joint. You can help flex and extend the knee with knee props and heel slides.

Next you want to strengthen not only the muscles around the knees, but also around the hip as well. Clamshells and a four way hip do a great job of strengthening these muscles.

Finally standing up, hamstring curls and balancing are great ways to strengthen and help stabilize the knee joint.

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Top 7 ACL Sprain Exercises & Stretches

An ACL sprain can have several different grades, and there is also a complete ACL tear. If you've had ACL surgery, follow the protocol given by your doctor or physical therapist.

These are my favorite ACL stretches and exercises for an ACL Sprain before surgery or if you decide not to have surgery.

To start off, you want to get the knee motion back. Heel slides, quad sets, knee props, and hamstring stretches can help you gain back motion that you might have lost with your injury. There are several other muscles around that knee that are also important to stretch, and you can find many other stretches on my channel.

Once you have mobilized and stretched the knee, you can work on strengthening the knee. A straight leg raise (SLR), terminal knee extension without and with a resistive band, and a balance progression series are great ways to get the strength and stability back in your knee.

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These knee arthritis exercises help the knees become stronger which can help with knee arthritis pain. They might be hard or painful in the beginning, but the stronger you get, the less pain you should have.

The first exercise is a quad set. This helps strengthen the quadriceps muscles in an isometric way. Next is a bridge. Bridging helps strengthen the hamstrings, glutes, and low back. Then you have hip abduction and hip adduction that work the outer and inner muscles.

Straight leg raises (SLR) and clamshell exercises are often thought more of hip exercises, but they are great for the knee as well. 

Now sitting in a chair, you will do hip flexion and knee extension or long arch quads (LAQ). These are also easy to do if you work at a desk all day.

Finally, standing up, you have heel/toe raises and mini squats. These will not only help with knee arthritis pain, but they will also help with balance and gait.

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Knee Arthritis Stretches & Exercises

10 Best Knee Arthritis Stretches

These knee arthritis stretches will help stretch out the muscles above and below the knee joint to help relieve knee pain from arthritis.

The first few knee arthritis stretches are for the calf, which crosses the knee joint, stretching the joint itself with a heel slide, and stretching the quad. Since the quad tendon is connected to the patella (kneecap), it is very important to stretch.

The next knee stretches are the hamstring and IT band stretch. Both these cross the knee joint, so when they are tight, they can put a lot of pressure on the joint causing pain.

Then there is the piriformis/gluteus stretch, groin stretch, and hip flexor stretch. Although most of these muscles don’t actually cross the knee joint, they have a lot to do with how it works, and they help keep the hip flexible as well. This all will help relieve the knee arthritis pain.

The last two stretches for knee arthritis are standing up. For the adductor muscles, some do cross the knee joint, but others will put pressure on the knee joint if they are tight. And finally, the anterior tibialis muscles have a lot to do with pulling our toes up when we walk. So if the knee is not working how it’s suppose to, these muscles can get overworked and very tight.

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