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The 8 Best Strengthening Exercises for the Knee

If you have sustained a knee injury or have knee osteoarthritis, you can do these easy strengthening exercises for the knee at least once a day. These exercises are safe, physio approved, easy to do and no equipment is needed

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What is osteoarthritis and why are strengthening exercises for the knee important

If you have sustained an injury to your knee joint, the muscles around the joint often “switch off”. It is therefore very important to switch them back on again, and remind them how to work! The only way to get them switched back on is by doing strengthening exercises for the knee. If the injury was severe, you may unfortunately also then be pre-disposed to developing osteoarthritis (OA). This is another important reason to do the strengthening exercises for the knee, to minimise the risk of OA.

Osteoarthritis is commonly called “wear and tear” arthritis. It is the most common form of arthritis and is associated with getting older, as the protective layer of cartilage between the bones in the joints starts to degenerate, leaving the cartilage thinner and the joint surfaces rougher. 

If the muscles around the joint are stronger, they can add extra stability to the joint. The extra stability decreases the shearing forces through the joint and helps to prevent excessive ” wear and tear” on the joint surfaces. The better your joint biomechanics, the less wear and tear, and the less pain you will have.

Remember when doing strengthening exercises for the knee…

Pain or discomfort should not be more than 3/10 (with 1/10 being a slight niggle and 10/10 being the worst pain you have ever experienced.) The exercises in this video are Phase One Exercises and are designed for people just starting their rehabilitation programme, or people who have just received a diagnosis or have recently sustained an injury.

This is a basic guide only. Due to the fact that everyone has different range of movement, levels of strength and levels of pain, it is always best to consult a Physiotherapist for a personalized rehabilitation programme. 

Anatomy of the quadriceps – important strengthening muscles for the knee

strengthening exercises for the knee muscles such as the quadriceps are very important
Your quadriceps muscles are an important muscle group to strengthen

The quadricep muscle group is made up of 4 muscles. The action of the quadriceps is straightening the knee joint. They perform a very important function in improving the stability of your knee joint and preventing wear and tear through the joint.

Try out the great exercises to strengthen your knee joint!You can also download the PDF in order to make it easier to exercises every day.

Be kind to your joints!


Carron Howard

Carron is a physiotherapist with over 20 years of experience, specialised in orthopedics, rehabilitation, sports injuries, backs and necks. She is a qualified Pilates instructor with a strong focus physical fitness, injury prevention and recovery. B Physt UP, OMT 1, SPT 1
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