Minor Ache or Major Problem? 6 Symptoms Exercisers Should Pay Attention To
Symptom: Tight Knees
Scenario: Yoga has done wonders for your stress, but the backs of your knees feel tight and tender.
Your downplay: I need to stretch more before class to keep my muscles loose.
Doctors' double-take: Actually, all of those stretching poses may have overly loosened your joints. Women's muscles and ligaments don't hold their joints in place as securely as men's do. "Overstretching can be all too easy then," Jaramillo says. As a result, your muscles and ligaments may get injured and inflamed, putting you at risk for a serious sprain.
What to do: Pay attention to where it hurts when you stretch your hamstring. "You should feel it in the whole length of the muscle," Jaramillo says. "If it's only in the knee, you're probably hyperextending." The good news is that you likely don't need a doctor. Just "be mindful about your form when stretching and be careful not to push your knees past their normal limits," Dr. Laskowski advises. Not sure what those boundaries are? A physical therapist or sports trainer can give you pointers as well as exercises to help you strengthen your muscles and ligaments.
A good knee-stabilizing move: Sit on the floor with your legs extended in front of you and tense your quads while pressing the backs of your knees down.
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