Knee pain hiking is relatively common v hikers, particularly as you gain older. However, a good regime that strengthening and also stretching can minimize this

long walking knee pain commonly noticed in the area behind the kneecap, called patellar tendonitis, and can intensify once walking downhill.

You are watching: Which exercise helps prepare the knee and kneecap for hiking?

Hiking conditioning practice can assist to minimization discomfort and pain and also sometimes even reverse it!

I discover the ideal exercises room those that work big areas that the body together rather than one specific muscle or group. This minimizes the hazard of imbalances and hence injury.

These exercises incorporate variations ~ above old classics like the squat, deadlift and calf raises

Stretching exercises deserve to also help with the emphasis invested in the iliotibial band, calves, and hamstring.

Here are six of the exercises that can aid to prepare the knees for hiking:


Squats are something all hikers need to do. Including this strength provides your balance better and to reduce your danger of injury.

Wall Squats

Wall squats assist to promote better muscle endurance and specific to advantage the knee on a day-long long walking expedition.

This exercise is advantageous for its capability to occupational the quads v an isometric contraction. Construct up the capacity to organize the squat position with time with a preferred variety in the region of 3-5 minutes.

Free Squats

Free squats can aid the patellar tendons align and also get the muscle yarn at the extremes of her motion variety to fire too. This has a the majority of benefits to her knee health.

When you first start to squat, save a slim curve in your ago by looking at the horizon. You have the right to put your hands in the little of your ago and make sure you save this curve or put your fingers to your temples.

There is a an excellent chance your knees will be a little creaky to begin with, so go together deep as you can and also gradually work up to full range squats.

Drop down with manage until your knees room as close to 90 degrees as possible. If girlfriend have good knees, you can drop into a deep squat, but do not press it - as quickly as you feel your lower back/pelvis curve under, that is as much as your body will certainly let girlfriend go.

Keep your kind and press up v your heels to return to your beginning position. This need to all be excellent at a slow count the 4 down and also 3 comes up.

Raised arm Squats

Once you have done that and also feel comfortable, begin to raise her arms as you descend right into the squat. Make sure you save your type and execute not go reduced than you have the right to do v good type (this will certainly be less because of the overhead arms)

This helps with flexibility in her torso and also lower back, which have the right to be a reason of knee pain.

Overarm squats

To add an additional mobility exercise, once you feel OK with raised arms, take it a towel, role it up and also pull that taught between your hands. Now organize this overhead together you carry out your squats. Make sure you store looking come the horizon and also squat together deeply together you can. Girlfriend will uncover this is nowhere close to as deep as you walk previously.

Barbell squats

For the really advanced among you, you have the right to do this through a barbell as though you room an Olympic weightlifter...but this is darn hard!


Use the desired exercise option and also complete 5 repetitions that 6 Reps. Enable yourself 60-120 seconds in between sets, yet allow more if required

Form is the most important thing here, no repetitions. For this reason if you space struggling to maintain your form, either go to an simpler version of the exercise or stop.


Cycling (on the roadways or a stationary bike) offers a perfect possibility to strengthen and also condition the muscles around the knees. A regular cycling session help to develop the hamstrings and quadriceps to administer both irreversible endurance and strength.

A planned practice program need to ideally start at the very least 2-3 months before beginning to hike in the wilderness. A cycling regime should incorporate 3-5 sessions per week through each conference lasting 20-25 minutes per day.


I also like to add in a Tabata into my to ride bicycle routine. As soon as you space warmed up, this only takes 5 minute to do, however it is so good for you....even if the is hateful at the time!

A Tabata has actually been displayed to perform wonders for what is referred to as your VO2 Max (or how an excellent your body is at processing oxygen) which provides all manner of great health and fitness benefits.

A Tabata is just 20 seconds flat out, complied with by 10 secs coasting repeated 8 times, then a minute tenderness cycling together you gain your breath back...well, several of it!

As a tip, begin off v an less complicated resistance 보다 think you will have the ability to do. The Tabata works finest if you deserve to be absolutely flat out during each the those 20 2nd stints.

By the end of them, you will certainly be gasping for breath and hating lactic acid...if not, press harder or wind the resistance increase a touch more.

Deadlifts and Hamstring Stretches

Improving the versatility of the hamstring is certain to minimize problems with knee pain indigenous hiking and also all-around knee health.

The hamstring works in mix with the quadriceps muscles to aid with sustaining the knee. Perform a hamstring stretch making use of a scissor or standing stretches.

In addition, get the rest of what are dubbed your rear-chain muscle working through deadlifts. This will both increase the mobility and also strengthen your hamstrings, with a an extremely nice side result of working your main point muscles too.

This not just helps through knee issues, but likewise helps v your balance, especially valuable when on uneven ground through a pack!

It is quite tough to define a deadlift, so the best bet is to watch this video

You can start off with a very light weight favor a few books in a pack. Together you acquire the technique, job-related up to bigger weights.

Once again, worry an ext about your form that the variety of repetitions, however the 5 to adjust of 6 is a an excellent place to aim for. As soon as you have the right to do this with your existing weight, include a bit an ext weight rather than adding reps.

Calf Stretches and Raises

Calf muscles can benefit from a day-to-day stretch come avoid problems with tightness which deserve to have the an adverse impact of knee pain.

You should likewise look to practice them to preserve their strength and balance as we have tendency to have a dominant side and it have the right to really show up in her calves (my left is way weaker 보다 my right for example!)

Calf Stretches

The easiest means to stretch them is to uncover a wall, store one leg straight, with the hoe on the ground and step the other foot forward, then push into the wall, making certain you save that heel on the ground. Host this because that ten seconds, then try to relocate your leg back a small and execute it again.

Calf Raises

To strengthen your calves, the progressive is nearly the just exercise you have the right to do! If girlfriend are new to this, stand on a level floor, keep your legs straight and simply raise yourself up onto tiptoe. Do not use your hands to balance as you have to work both her legs.

Make certain you raise slowly to your maximum expansion to the count of 2 or 3 and also descend slowly at the exact same rate.

As you get comfortable law this, was standing on a stair through your heels hanging end the edge. You can now autumn deeper, providing your calves second stretch.

Once you acquire to grips through this, try it one-legged - make certain you job-related your weaker side very first and just do the same number of repetitions together you could manage with her weak foot on your stronger side. You deserve to do this on a level floor or ~ above a step as you obtain stronger.

Finally, include some load - perform this through a fill on your ago or go to the gym where they have actually machines for this exercise.

A positive affect of strengthening the calves is the capacity to ton the muscles roughly the knee. Plus, the solid calf muscles are much more efficient at offering shock-absorbing security while hiking.

Iliotibial tape Stretch

The tendon well-known as the iliotibial band is uncovered on the outside of the leg and stretches indigenous the knee to hip. If this muscle is left to get too tight it deserve to start to cause issues with knee pain.

See more: Why Do Electromagnetic Waves Not Require A Medium For Travel ?

A constant session of one iliotibial tape stretch is certain to help avoid this type of problem.

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