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Recommended exercises to protect a dodgy knee

davemcv6730davemcv6730 Member Posts: 78 Member Member Posts: 78 Member
Hi all, I am in need of some advice.

I have been on MFA journey for 3 months and have gone from 273 to 232 lbs in that time. (5’11’’ tall, 46 years old).

I have 3 metallic screws in my left knee from a sports injury 20 years ago. I live in a warm climate so not bothered unduly by weather aches although there are early signs of arthritis in the knee joint.

Anyway for the first 5/6 weeks of my journey walking was my only exercise but then I started to get aches, pains, mild swelling, shinsplints, sore calf etc. so I have since amended my routine to 1 day walking, 1 day stationary bike and 1 day swimming which has cured a lot of my ills.

I would like to include some workout routines also into my programme. My goal is to lose weight, not too bothered about toning at this stage.

Welcome any suggestions exercises which avoid any stress on the knees.
edited November 2020


  • brianpperkins131brianpperkins131 Member Posts: 90 Member Member Posts: 90 Member
    Talk to your doctor. It's clear that there are still some issues from the knee.

    If they clear you, look at more swimming and cycling versus walking. With a goal of losing weight, the more intensive burns from those activities can help with you with maintaining the deficit needed. Cycling and swimming are also less (or non) weight bearing on the knee. Depending on what the knee can handle there are plenty of interval based swim and bike programs so you can burn calories and tone.
  • charmmethcharmmeth Member Posts: 805 Member Member Posts: 805 Member
    I find rowing (not too high intensity) better for my knees than jogging. I also walk, but I wear walking boots and try to avoid walking too far on hard surfaces such as roads. BodyFit by Amy has some useful workouts that are lighter on the knees too.
  • ChieflrgChieflrg Member Posts: 8,803 Member Member Posts: 8,803 Member
    I wouldn't avoid stress on the knees. I would avoid stress that isn't useful.

    Resistance training is useful stress that will help stabilize joints, increase bone density, slowing down sarcopenia that is extremely important once we reach age 40, and extend life, amoung other benefits.

    What kind of resistance training? More info is needed.
  • MikePfirrmanMikePfirrman Member Posts: 2,438 Member Member Posts: 2,438 Member
    Air Bikes and rowers are fine for my knee. I have a garbage right knee. Plus, both help build some muscle, so they also have functional benefits. Oddly enough, walking stairs doesn't both my knee all that much either. Wide lunges sometimes are good too (exaggerated wide ones). Walking/jogging on softer trails was OK for me too. I got to the point, though, where jogging was too much for me after four or five years, but it built up a nice cardio base for me to continue.

    Goblet squats are also great for most with knee issues. So are step ups on plyo boxes. I don't know about you, but I can't put too much weight on the knee. It will literally feel like it's popping apart, so for me, heavy barbells are out of the question. I can handle things like modified pistol squats, using a stair or a chair under me.

    I know a lot of folks with bad knees. So much of it is individual. What you can handle and what you can't. And you know when you try things. For instance, a reverse lunge is easy for most. My bad knee is fine on a reverse lunge when it's the lead knee, but when it's the back knee, no way. You gradually gauge what's safer and what's not. For instance, though I can't do heavy barbells, I can do heavy squat snatches. I can also do broad jumps. Plyo jumps aren't bad either. You know your body more than anyone. If it doesn't feel right, don't do it. But challenge yourself too.
    edited November 2020
  • djaxon1djaxon1 Member Posts: 79 Member Member Posts: 79 Member
    I have an old leg injury which led to arthritis in the knee 20 yrs later - confirmed on x-ray .
    It used to give occasional pain and I saw physios who prescribed certain excercises.
    The exercises seemed to build a "corset" of muscle around the knee which has helped me continue normal activities . I only did the bare minimum - but it worked!
    I would see what the medics say , but as mentioned already by others above, don't stop working the knee.
    There will be quite focused exercises for knees you can track down - try them .
    I'm sure your knees will thank you for the good results you've already achieved .
    - I think weight loss is 90+% kitchen
  • davemcv6730davemcv6730 Member Posts: 78 Member Member Posts: 78 Member
    Thanks all for the interesting feedback and ideas, much appreciated 👍
  • minnelizzyminnelizzy Member Posts: 26 Member Member Posts: 26 Member
    I have a bad knee. I love my elliptical. Biking is also good. Strength training too 👍🏽
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