Knee Bursitis Stretches & Exercises

I often hear patients tell me they have that bursa. Well everyone has bursas throughout their bodies. A bursa is basically a small fluid filled sac that protects our tendons from rubbing on the bones. When the bursa becomes inflamed, it swells up, and can become very painful. This is called bursitis. The most common spots for this are the hips, knees, and shoulders. Today I am going to show you some simple stretches and exercises to help with knee bursitis.

The main muscles around the knee are the calf muscles, the quad muscles, and the hamstring muscles. The first stretch is going to be a calf stretch. You can use a long towel like a beach towel and roll it up to help with the stretch. Make sure you put it just at the ball of your foot. Not too low and not too high. Keep your leg nice and straight (don't bend the knee), and pull the towel towards you until you feel a stretch. This shouldn't be painful, just tension. Hold for 30 seconds and do it 3 times.  

The next stretch is going to be for the hamstrings. You can get a combination stretch with this for your hamstrings and your calf muscles. Keep the towel at the ball of your foot, and lie down on the ground. Keeping your leg straight without bending your knee, pull your leg straight upward and pull your toes towards you to get the calf as well. Hold for 30 seconds and do this 3 times.

Now you are going to stretch your quad muscle. You can do this a few different ways. If you don't have a belt or strap close by, you can lie on your side and grab your ankle behind you. Gently pull your foot/ankle towards your bottom. If your thigh is coming forward past your hips, then you are not going to get a good stretch. Try to keep your thigh in alignment with your hips or even slightly behind you. Hold for 30 seconds and do it 3 times. You can use a towel or belt to wrap around your ankle if you are really tight and can't grab your ankle with your hand.

It's time for some strengthening exercises now. The first strengthening exercise is a quad set. I like to use a towel or roll as a target, but you don't have to use anything. Take the towel, roll it up, and place it just under your knee. Push your knee downward into the roll like you are trying to straighten your knee as much as you can. Pulling your toes up towards you helps straighten your knee. Hold this for 3-5 seconds and do 10-15 of them, and do 2-3 sets.

Next is a straight leg raise (SLR). Lie down on your back, and bend one knee up. Straighten out the leg you want to exercise. Pull your toes toward you to help lock out the knee. Just lift your leg to the height of your bended knee. There is no need to kick your leg way up in the air, and it actually takes away from the exercise. Make sure you are slow and controlled with this exercise. Going fast and using momentum will not be effective. If you get to 20-25 and it is easy, then you can add weights if you have them.

Finally, you are going to turn onto your side. This is to strengthen your hip abductors. The leg you want to work is going to be on top, and the bottom leg can be slightly bent for comfort. You want to use the same technique where you keep your leg straight, and you pull your toes toward you to lock out the knee. Try to keep your leg in a straight line with your body keeping your hip up and perpendicular with the ground. Again, use controlled movements, and you don't have to kick your leg way up in the air. If you get to 20-25 and it is easy, then you can add weights if you have them.

 

Subscribe on YouTubeGot Questions? Click here to send me an email.

Never miss another Ask Doctor Jo video. Click here to subscribe to my YouTube channel.


 


DISCLAIMER: The videos, posts and comments contained on this website are not medical advice or a treatment plan and are intended for general education and demonstration purposes only. They should not be used to self-diagnose or self-treat any health, medical, or physical condition. Don’t use this website to avoid going to your own healthcare professional or to replace the advice they give you. Consult with your healthcare professional before doing anything contained on this website. You agree to indemnify and hold harmless Ask Doctor Jo, LLC and its officers for any and all losses, injuries, or damages resulting from any and all claims that arise from your use or misuse of this website’s content. Ask Doctor Jo, LLC makes no representations about the accuracy or suitability of this content. Use of this website is at your sole risk. 

AFFILIATE LINK DISCLAIMER: This site contains affiliate links and ads to purchase various products. When you click on links and ads to various merchants on this site and make a purchase, this can result in this site earning a commission. Affiliate programs and affiliations include, but are not limited to, the Amazon Associate Program.