Many yoga practitioners experience discomfort or aches because their hips are tight, their knees are sensitive, or their legs have become weak from sitting for most of their days. Swelling and pain can also result if the knee cartilage becomes worn out over time. The key is to go slowly and remain gentle whenever possible.
It's always recommended that you talk to a physical therapist, healthcare practitioner, or certified yoga instructor to find out more about individualized modifications you can make to enhance your practice. This is because how each person experiences discomfort or pain in their knee is unique to their injury history, situation, and practice.
However, we've collated a list of generalized adaptions that may not be a catch-all solution for those with knee injuries but are helpful launch points for personal discovery and exploration to elevate the practice while promoting healing and preventing future injuries.
Top Adaptions to Practice Yoga Safely with Knee Injuries
1- Make Ample Space for the Knees
Apply this rule to every aspect of your daily life, whether off or on your mat! Our knees provide enormous support in our lives. Make sure to provide ample space for the knees to enjoy movement and breathe. Recognize when you're pushing them too far and respect their limitations. It's especially crucial to give them proper breathing space in situations or poses requiring extreme flexion.
Pro Tip: When you're practicing a child's pose, roll up a blanket and put it between the calves and thighs to give the knees the space they need to breathe.
2- Bend Softly
One of the most common knee-related injuries stems from joints that are hypermobile, such as hyperextended knees. Inviting a soft bend into every pose can remind you to engage the leg muscles rather than dumping weight onto the knee joint.
Pro Tip: When practicing a Triangle pose, place a yoga block under the front calf to prevent the hyperextension of your front knee if you find it difficult to identify how softly you should bend the knees.
3- Strengthen the Leg Muscles
Did you know the knee joint is the most superficial and largest in the body? Since it's mechanically weak, it highly depends on the strength of the adjacent tendons, muscles, and ligaments. Try to work on the overall leg strengthening to protect your knees.
Pro Tip: Most people have relatively weak inner thighs. When practicing asanas like the Chair pose, use a yoga wedge between the legs to engage your inner thighs while working the leg muscles.
Living with knee injuries requires becoming more mindful and aware of your movements. Adapting with every practice won't be easy, but it will help you learn quite a lot about your knees as you go.
At Feelio Blocks, we believe in healing and expanding your capabilities as you grow. Sometimes it's the most painful points that inspire the most significant growth. Listen to your knees and buy yoga props from our online store to restore your yoga practice.
We house a range of high-quality, custom yoga block wedges, yoga parallettes, push-up stand parallettes, and other yoga accessories for helping yogis enjoy the discipline to the fullest while preventing overuse injuries.
You don't have to be a beginner or suffer from injuries to benefit from fitness wrist support blocks! Get in touch with us or subscribe to our YouTube channel to learn why these wooden yoga wrist blocks are perfect for anyone looking to relieve stiffness, pain, and pressure in the knees, elbows, ribcage, wrist, shoulders, and other body parts.