Exercise Progression For Knee Pain – Video

It's All About The Glutes

Girl Exercises With Knee Pain

Knee Pain can be debilitating. It starts as a little ache – no big deal – you think you can push through it. So you continue on with your weekly exercise routine only to find that the pain isn’t getting better, it’s getting worse. What started as a minor nag is now a major issue.

Sound familiar?

I see people of all ages with knee pain. Young soccer players, high school football players, runners, weekend warriors, and older folks. Although there are many different diagnoses acting as the source of the pain, the underlying issue is often weakness in certain muscles of the leg, particularly the Glutes.

If the leg were a chain, the Glutes are the Anchor that the chain is attached to. They must be strong enough to keep the rest of the chain – the knee and the ankle – in line while performing all kinds of activities.

A few years ago, during my Orthopaedic Residency, two of my colleagues and I filmed this video demonstrating a Glute strengthening progression of exercises for Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (knee pain). We made it as part of a project measuring the compliance of patient’s participation in a home exercise program from their Physical Therapist.

What we found was that, overwhelmingly, people prefer video over photos or written instructions for exercise instructions.

After the project was complete in 2013, I casually posted the video to Youtube without promoting it or tagging it in any significant way. Having not given it much thought until recently, I decided to retrieve it to pass on to you. I was amazed to see that the video has been viewed over 41,000 times.

This goes to show 2 things:

  1. Knee pain is prevalent
  2. Strengthening the Glutes is key

Whether you currently have knee pain, have struggled with knee pain in the past… or not, following this progression of exercises will undoubtedly help you improve your everyday function, athletic performance, and prevent pain and injury in the future.


Glute Strengthening Exercises For Knee Pain

You can get Theraband Resistance Bands for really cheap.  They are a great resource to have at home for a bunch of great exercises.

Question: What do you do to strengthen your Glutes? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

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Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Chau

    I have a patient who practices Wushu (martial arts) and he’s having B knee pain. Tightness is a factor and we’ve spent a lot of time relieving his tight quads. However, since he’s so high level with his power moves (he practices 6-7x a week, sometimes multiple times a day), are there higher level exercises for glut strengthening other than the ones in the video?

    • Michael Curtis

      There are too many exercises to list here. My recommendation would be to look at the function of how he is performing his “power moves” breaking them down to see where they can be improved or where he can improve. I wouldn’t doubt that strengthening glutes will most likely help, but if he is performing moves every day in a way that isn’t optimal, each move needs to be dissected and analyzed by you. His treatment must be specific to his impairments. Hope this helps!

  • Ruth Boyle

    That was an awesome and very informative video. THANKS FOR SHARING.

  • Jim Alexander

    I ended up seeing a physiotherapist for chronic knee pain that would come for 2 – 3 weeks at a time, then leave for a while. I made a machine to do the exercises with while seated at my desk and on the computer, then patented it. I show info on it via my LinkedIn page. You can type undisturbed while doing the knee exercises and the machine bolts quickly onto a standard office chair. The pain eventually left me. Some time later I began using Allopurinol for gout and I suspect that gout was the main culprit, but the leg exerciser is good to keep your major muscle groups in your legs moving instead of just being sedentary.

    • Michael Curtis

      Hey Jim, that sounds interesting. Always better to be moving than static.