September 2018

Healthy Knees, Happy Workout

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Healthy Knees, Happy Workout

Knee health is super important, not just for maintaining a fitness routine, but for everyday functional movement. While you should always check with your doctor on medical issues, if knee pain is a reality for you, read on. 

Build Muscle to Support Joints
One of the best preventative measures for long-term joint health is to build up the muscles surrounding the joint. According to Ashley McConnell Davis, Instructor and Assessment Coordinator for Jazzercise, Inc., a cross-training approach that strengthens quadriceps, hamstrings, hips, and calves can help improve range of motion.

Use Proper Technique
“In general, knees should always point in the same direction as your feet,” says Claire La Breche, Training & Development Manager for Jazzercise, Inc. Whether you’re in a lunge, squat or grand plié, the knee should be over the ankle, not in front of it. One trick is to keep your weight in your heels, which encourages proper alignment. 

Check Your Shoes
According to the American Academy of Podiatric Sports Medicine, you should replace your athletic shoes after 300-500 miles of walking or 45-60 hours of aerobic dance. Another clue? You’ll see creases on the sides and bottoms of the soles. Shopping, anyone?!

Modify When Needed
Many fitness centers offer low-impact versions of their popular classes, but that shouldn’t prevent you from taking your favorite class just because it’s higher impact. If a movement calls for twisting or turning in a way your knees can’t support, try a basic squat or march instead. 

Ask Your Instructor for Help
Always let your instructor know about your injuries. Instructors can offer tips for modifications and form. Her goal is to keep you moving, so don’t be shy about asking for help!

Knee pain is pretty common. But don’t let aging or ailing knees stop you from getting the workout you crave. Again, be sure to consult your physician before exercising with known injuries or limitations. How do you modify your fitness routine when pain strikes?

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