A knee injury may feel like one of the worst things that could happen to an active person or an athlete. With the accompanying disruption to their usual fitness routine, they may feel out of sorts and may spend every day wishing for a speedy recovery. However, these individuals can make some crucial adjustments to their training regimen to maintain their stamina and strength. Balance exercises are particularly great for recovery.
Training & Rest
First of all, the speed of your recovery depends on two essential considerations:
1. How much you train
If you usually have an active lifestyle, you won’t let a knee or ACL injury prevent you from doing at least some form of physical activity. This is particularly true for athletes. Fortunately, there are many activities to keep you active and physically fit and even accelerate your recovery.
However, you need to carefully choose your exercises and consult your doctor, physiotherapist, or other medical professionals before starting an exercise program while injured. Depending on your injury’s severity and extent, they may recommend a variety of exercises and activities to keep you from exacerbating your condition. Whatever your choice of physical activity, it is super-important to warm up to avoid further injury. You can warm up the legs with a 5-10 minute walk or cycle.
When you train, please don’t overdo it. Tone it down and avoid intense cardio exercises, particularly those that require flexion and extension of your knees. It is unlikely that you’ll be advised to run, jog, or hike before you’re fully recovered. However, kayaking, one-legged cycling, rowing, or using an arm ergometer (the handcycle machine) are cardio activities that don’t require the use of both knees or any knees at all. Swimming or hydrotherapy is also ideal for anyone with joint or muscle injuries. When your physiotherapist agrees to it, you can go for short walks of light intensity.
It is also essential to maintain your flexibility and strength, especially in muscle groups other than the ones in your injured knee. Your physiotherapist can let you know if it’s okay to do assisted bench presses for your chest and arm muscles, lat pulldowns, or seated cable rows for your back, press for your shoulders, or others. Depending on your condition, it is best to follow their advice for the appropriate repetition and load for each exercise.
Strengthening exercises build muscle to support your knee; your muscles will become tight, making them more prone to injury. Gentle stretching exercises loosen the muscles up to reduce muscle soreness and keep the muscles long and flexible.
2. How much you rest
If you only sleep a few hours and don’t get enough rest, this will negatively affect your recovery. Rest helps restore your range of motion, mobility, and normal function, so it is vitally important to get adequate sleep before looking at other recovery process elements. Ensure you develop a sleep routine that allows you to get good quality sleep.
Include these balance exercises to help speed your recovery.
Exercise 1 – Straight Leg Lifts
Lie on your back with one knee bent. The other leg should be straight on the floor. Tighten the thigh muscles of your straight leg and lift the leg until it is about a foot off the floor. Hold for 3-5 seconds before bringing the straight leg down and switching sides. Repeat this exercise in sets.
Exercise 2 – Side-lying Leg Raises
Work your outer hip muscles with this pelvic-strengthening activity. Relax on your side with your legs straight. Then lift the top leg about a foot or two away from the other. This exercise helps to build stability in walking and standing while preventing strain in the knee.
Exercise 3 – One-Leg Stands (with Support)
Use a chair or countertop to support yourself and stand on your damaged leg for around thirty seconds while keeping your right leg off the ground. This exercise allows you to build strength in your injured leg while eliminating the risk of falling during your recovery period, when it may be challenging to keep your balance.
Exercise 4 – Single-Leg Dip
Put a chair on either side of your body and rest your hands on the chairs. Lift one leg slightly in front of you, shifting your weight to the other leg. Slowly lower your body down, pushing your weight into the heel of your supporting leg as you bend your knee. Hold for 3-5 seconds before releasing and switching sides. Repeat in sets.
Exercise 5 – Hamstring Curls
Hold onto the back of a chair and shift your weight to one leg. Lift the other foot and bring the heel towards your buttocks. Hold for 3-5 seconds before releasing and switching sides. Repeat this exercise in sets.
Exercise 6 – Step-ups
Use a balance board or other platform for this strengthening exercise—step one foot on the platform letting your other foot hang loosely off the platform. Hold for 3-5 seconds before releasing your hanging foot to the floor, followed by the second foot. Switch sides and repeat in sets.
From single leg stands to exercises that increase flexibility, the right balance workout will keep you healthy and nimble and reduce strain on the body, especially the knees. These exercises help to ensure your muscles move efficiently. That means you don’t have to fall significantly behind your usual fitness level due to your injury.
Find the proper exercise regimen, adopt a positive attitude and healthy habits, such as rest, and give yourself adequate time to heal. You’ll be running, jumping, and achieving your fitness goals once again before you know it.
Learn about Bobo Home and how you can train with our fun and straightforward balance training process.