To really future proof your knees, you have to address both sides of the chain as well as the knee itself. Both the hips and the ankles/feet have a say in what happens and if there is instability in either, then the knees can become over-stressed. Especially if the knee isn't tracking optimally for the load involved. Think squatting with heavy weights or running with your knees caving in every rep/step. Here's a video addressing feet.



👉 Standing Clam Shell
Stand on one leg, slightly hinge at the hips and maintain balance as you raise the other leg to the side. Maintain a short foot and keep the hips aligned and locked in while the leg moves to the side (avoid swivelling the hips). You should feel this in both glutes. Using a band will increase resistance.

👉 Box Squats
Maintain knee alignment as you progressively increase the weight in a box squat to strengthen the tissue surrounding the knee and also practice a balanced movement pattern where the knees aren't caving in. For this exercise, the box is just to control for height so make sure you don't actually sit on the box, stay engaged!

👉 Isometric Holds
Usually when the knee is feeling sore or achy (even painful), it can be linked to weakness as well as the stability of the hip or ankles/foot. This exercise strengthens the quad tendon in a range of motion that doesn't usually get targeted in other training. Bend the knee as far as it goes (think heel to bum) and hold a contraction for 45 seconds at a time against resistance. Stick to a pain, tension, or discomfort scale of 3/10. Anything more and you might be overstressing the knee, any lower and the stress might not be enough to strengthen. 

Note: While it's okay to have your knees inwards in some occasions, it's not ever a good idea to only have one pattern available to you. Just like posture, being stuck in any position will be detrimental. 

If you have severe knee pain, it's best to seek out a professional.

Give these a go and let us know how you get on! Don't forget to share the love!

Personal Trainer: Michael Lahood
Author: Laurent Pang