Workout: Protect your knees and back

How do your knees feel? What about your lower back? Ouchy? You’re not alone. Knees and back are the most common areas for overuse injuries — stemming from both endurance sports training and simply aging. Let’s fix ’em! Try these two eight-minute workouts with me. The first one targets the supporting muscles of the knee and the second targets the supporting muscles of the back. (UPDATE: We just added a video for the knee-protection sequence. Stay tuned for the lower-back!)

Knee protection

Strengthen your hips, glutes, and the muscles you use to balance and support your knees. Do the following sequence twice, performing each move on your right side and then again on your left. For each exercise, do as many reps as you can in 30 seconds, while maintaining form and control.

  • Single leg bent-over squats
  • Single leg bent-over knee repeaters
  • Side plank leg lifts
  • Side plank hip lifts

Low back protection

Strengthen your abs — especially your transverse abdominus — for increased support to your lower back. Do four rounds of this sequence, doing as many reps as you can of each move for 30 seconds each, while maintaining form and control:

  • Plank knee to opposite elbow
  • Bridge march
  • Plank knee to same elbow
  • Pulsing crunch

I’ll be posting videos of these soon. In the meantime, you can ask questions in the comments, or contact me directly.

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