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Does the elliptical hurt anyone else's knees?

Vain_WitchVain_Witch Posts: 481Member Member Posts: 481Member Member
I've heard it's supposed to be better than the treadmill, but I can do an hour on the treadmill (on some pretty serious incline even) with little to no pain in my knees...but 5 minutes on the elliptical and I want to cry!!! I'm not allowed to run (doctor's orders) so I REALLY want to be able to do the elliptical since it seems like you can really get a great burn on it!
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Replies

  • SqeekyjojoSqeekyjojo Posts: 707Member Member Posts: 707Member Member
    Yes, me.

    So I don't use it. I row instead, as that doesn't put pressure on them in the same way - it's not worth screwing up my knee joints over.
  • awholenewworldawholenewworld Posts: 61Member Member Posts: 61Member Member
    Hurts my knees and my hips too. I stick to the treadmill or the stationary bike for cardio.
  • wjleffiwjleffi Posts: 51Member Member Posts: 51Member Member
    Try using it and making sure your weight stays in your heels. It can be bad for your knees otherwise.
  • auzziecawth66auzziecawth66 Posts: 494Member Member Posts: 494Member Member
    The elliptical is great but you have to be sure to find one that is inline with your natural stride. If your stride isn't inline with the machine then yes it can def hurt your knees. Ellipticals are def NOT one size fits all.
  • caspergirl7caspergirl7 Posts: 602Member Posts: 602Member
    yep same here.. kills my knees
  • pangy1958pangy1958 Posts: 151Member Member Posts: 151Member Member
    After having an operation on my knee in July i am just starting to use elliptical again. The physio told me to start slowly and not many minutes gradually building up. I do find that my hips do hurt some times and then others not.
  • madworld1madworld1 Posts: 524Member Posts: 524Member
    YES!! I told my doctor about it and he didn't believe me. He said that they are supposed to be a good form of cross training for individuals with bad knees. I have tried numerous ellipticals and find that they all hurt my knees. Glad I'm not the only one.
  • VickiMitkinsVickiMitkins Posts: 249Member Member Posts: 249Member Member
    No problems for me. Actually think it's helped strengthen the muscles around my knees (which my ortho said I needed to do to reduce knee pain I was having). My knees have some arthritis and the typical 50 year old creeks and groans. I have a friend that can't use it because of the stress on her knees (something to do with the motion pushing down and back in the stride). She close to 60 though and really needs knee replacements. It also could just be the machine does not fit you well. I'm short and find some machines are just hard for me to use. I bought my own, so no problem with that now. When I first started on it, I thought it was the devil machine. Could not manage more than 5 minutes at a time. You might just need to give it some more time and increase your time on it slowly. If your knees continue to hurt, then stick with the treadmill.
  • Cat_LiftsCat_Lifts Posts: 183Member Member Posts: 183Member Member
    Is the resistance set too high, possibly? Do you tend to leave your whole foot flat on the pedals (heels down), or use more of the ball of your feet to push? I know it may sound silly, but check your positioning of your feet when you step on/are using the elliptical. Make sure they're evenly matched in placement on the steps, one not too far in and the other too far out. Again I know it might sound silly, but I had a slight issue with knee pain once and that helped a little. Something about the positioning of my feet/hip alignment was more of my issue, not so much pushing off the pedal. Then again, it was also one of my first times in a long, long time I used the elliptical, so perhaps my knees were a little unused to it, although I didn't have severe pain. Slight discomfort at most - the burn in my quads helped hide it, though. :tongue:

    However, if you're experiencing pain to the point where it's unbearable, I wouldn't do it, regardless of the benefits of the burn. There are plenty of other options for a good burn as well. Are you jogging/running on the treadmill when doing incline, or walking? If walking, stick to that and just go a little longer - you ought to get an equal caloric burn as you would on an elliptical, you'll just be spending a little more time, and no/less knee pain!
  • VickiMitkinsVickiMitkins Posts: 249Member Member Posts: 249Member Member
    The elliptical is great but you have to be sure to find one that is inline with your natural stride. If your stride isn't inline with the machine then yes it can def hurt your knees. Ellipticals are def NOT one size fits all.

    ^this^ I eventully just bought my own instead of going to the gym. tried out quite a few before I found one that worked for me.
  • TR0bertsTR0berts Posts: 7,785Member Member Posts: 7,785Member Member
    Knees? No. Hips? Yes.
  • Roni_MRoni_M Posts: 726Member Posts: 726Member
    Kills both my knees and hips. I think the placement of my legs when the weight transfers is the issue. I have psoriatic arthritis though. Love my treadmill and work the incline with no problems. :flowerforyou:
  • umer76umer76 Posts: 1,295Member Member Posts: 1,295Member Member
    Okay so this is new for me. Last month I started C25k and went upto week 6 pretty quickly. I was doing outdoors and was doing 2kms in 18 minutes. But then I started to have pain just below my knees and then I had to stop. I rested my knees for 3 weeks and after reading on different forums and advice from mfp friends I was recommended to use elliptical trainer. I have good stamina on elliptical I do 30-40 min between levels 8-16 and never had pain before. Recently I am having pain on my shins. I have stopped again. I love doing elliptical but seeing this thread I can see elliptical can cause knee pain too, thats sad:( For some reason I am attracted to elliptical and treadmill and not doing much of strength training. I guess ultimately I have to save the knees and should do more strength training. Any thoughts? I still love elliptical though:(
  • mili5726mili5726 Posts: 116Member Member Posts: 116Member Member
    No but it makes my feet go numb after about 15 minutes.
  • ToughMudderAddictToughMudderAddict Posts: 290Member Member Posts: 290Member Member
    I no longer use the elliptical because it does hurt my knees. I find that the "foot pedals" are too far apart compared to my normal stride which puts weird pressure on my knees and makes my feet not feel like they are where they belong.. does that make sense?
  • Gutter19Gutter19 Posts: 141Member Posts: 141Member
    No but it makes my feet go numb after about 15 minutes.

    Yes the lack of foot movement gets to me as well.
  • VickiMitkinsVickiMitkins Posts: 249Member Member Posts: 249Member Member
    I no longer use the elliptical because it does hurt my knees. I find that the "foot pedals" are too far apart compared to my normal stride which puts weird pressure on my knees and makes my feet not feel like they are where they belong.. does that make sense?

    I had this problem too. It really depends on the machine. Problem is most gym machines have the rear flywheel which requires more space in between. I found a machine that fit me and baought it since I prefer exercizing at home. Someone also mentioned the numb feet. That too can be an issue. Not as much of a problem on my new machine because it has nice cushy gell inserts. I did find the those curved shape up shoes helped. The curved bottom kind of rolls on the peddle allow small adjustments.
  • umer76umer76 Posts: 1,295Member Member Posts: 1,295Member Member
    Then alternative to elliptical would be cycling then? In order to save the knees.
  • bbmich23bbmich23 Posts: 30Member Member Posts: 30Member Member
    I got rid of mine just for that reason. It was horrible! My husband had the same problem. I walk and do other activity..
  • wikitbikitwikitbikit Posts: 521Member Posts: 521Member
    It hurts my everything. Even my eyes! Pretty sure it was designed by the Marquis de Sade.
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