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Got bad knees? Here are 5 exercises for you

Bad knees can happen to us all – maybe from running, carrying too much weight or just simply overuse and they can really inhibit exercise. To avoid further injury and discomfort, here’s a few exercise ideas to work around your bad knees.

5 exercises for moms with bad knees

We have included an easier and harder option with each exercise. To help prevent further injury, start with the easier option and build up your workout to move onto the harder one.

1. Modified squats

Modified squats onto a chair (less range of motion) and wider stance (depending on the pain/injury)
Modified squats holding a wall for support (less range of motion) and wider stance (depending on the pain/injury)

2. Shadow boxing

Easier option

Box fast into the air with hands in a fist.

Do 100 punches.

Harder option

Box slower into the air, holding dumbells (alternate punches forward and upwards).

3. Dumbell tricep extensions and bicep curls


Easier option

In a standing position with one leg slightly forward, hold the dumbell in the right hand and tuck the elbow in towards your ribcage. Extend your arm straight behind you, then bicep curl that same arm so your hand touches your shoulder for full range of motions.

Do 15 reps on each arm

Harder option

User heavier weights

4. Side lying leg lift

Easier option

Lie on your side with legs extended out straight like a pencil shape. Rest your head on your bottom hand and lift your top arm vertical towards the ceiling. Keep your face forward and try not to rock your pelvic bone forward or backward. Lift your top leg up towards the ceiling.

Do 20 reps on each leg

Harder option

Bend your knees and elbow. Bring the elbow down towards the knee. Repeat.

5. Bicycle crunches

Easier option

Lie on your back with knees bent, feet flat on the floor and support your head with your fingertips. Tuck your chin down towards your chest, pretending you have a peach under your chin. Abdominal-crunch up towards your knees, then lift legs up to 90 degrees at the hips and knees. Rotate your right shoulder to your left knee while straightening your right leg, then return to start. Alternate sides. Keep repeating the exercise, breathing deeply at all times, for 30 seconds, alternating.

Harder option

Hold the movement on each side for 3 counts and slow down the movement.

Additional exercises:

  • Swimming
  • Bicycle riding indoor or outdoor
  • Gentle walking
  • Wall squat
  • Depending on injury or pain – wider squats
  • Dyno band – back rowing

Now you can workout and take care of your bad knees. Also you can share your workout with other moms in The Healthy Mommy community.

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The Challenge is home to customizable meal plans, 24/7 social support and realistic exercises moms can do AT HOME.

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