4 Knee-Friendly Quad Stretches

I got a nice hotel room overlooking a baseball stadium in San Diego. Each night there’s a baseball game and I find it so cool to work in the room with the window open and listen to the sounds of the game going on.

baseball-stadium-in-san-diego

 Today, I will be answering one of the most common questions that my clients ask me…

“Is there a way that I can stretch my quads without hurting my knee?”

These are the four knee-friendly quad stretches that you can do.

Enjoy the exercises!

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Some people tend to avoid the traditional Quad Stretch because they find it painful in the knees.

Today, I wanted to go through Quad Stretch Pain and what to do about it.

Quad Stretch Pain

CLICK HERE to watch the YouTube video.

I got Andrea to demonstrate the stretches.

Traditional Quad Stretch

Stand tall and look straight ahead. Keep your hands on something stable and firm for balance like a chair or a wall so you can focus on the stretch. Bring your heel towards the seat.

Traditional Quad Stretch
Traditional Quad Stretch

A lot of people just can’t handle this position due to it putting too much pressure on their knees.

I will demonstrate some tweaks that you can do to eliminate knee pain and get the benefits from this Traditional Quad Stretch exercise. The first two modifications may require loop tubing. But feel free to use a skipping rope, a towel, or anything handy to keep you in position.

#1 – Light Quad Stretch

Using the loop tubing or rope, perform a quad stretch. You can actually decrease the pressure on the knees by bringing the heel further up instead of pulling the heel straight towards the chair.

Light Quad Stretch
Light Quad Stretch

Perform 1 set of 2 reps, alternating back and forth with a good stop at the end position for 20 seconds and light intensity.

#2 – 90-Degree Quad Stretch

Again, using the loop tubing or rope, straighten your legs to form 90 degrees at the hip and knee. Bring your heel back as if you are kicking something with your heel and that brings your knee past the hip. You will feel a good quad and hip flexor stretch without any knee pain or knee stress.

90 Degree Quad Stretch
90-Degree Quad Stretch

Perform 1 set of 2 reps alternating back and forth with a good stop at the end position for 20 seconds and light intensity.

#3 – Standing Hip Flexor Stretch

Most people with knee pain can’t handle the bend in the legs while performing a hip flexor stretch. They may also feel some pressure on their quadriceps and the hip area. So, we’ll lessen the pain by performing a standing hip flexor stretch instead of a kneeling one.

Take a half step forward and a half step back. Keep your front leg flat and then slightly bend your front knee on the ball of your foot. Keep your the abdominal area and glutes tight and bring your hips forward.

Standing Hip Flexor Stretch
Standing Hip Flexor Stretch

Perform 1 set of 2 reps alternating back and forth with a good stop at the end position for 20 seconds and light intensity.

#4 – Standing Hip Flexor Stretch with Hands Overhead

In order to intensify the standing hip flexor stretch position, bring your arms overhead and lean back a little bit. This elongates your body as you increase your lever, and allows you to get a stronger stretch in the quad and the hip flexor areas.

Standing Hip Flexor Stretch with Hands Overhead
Standing Hip Flexor Stretch with Hands Overhead

Perform 1 set of 2 reps alternating back and forth with a good stop at the end position for 20 seconds and light intensity.

I highly recommend doing alternating reps for the above exercises. This allows both knees to get the most benefits from this routine. If only one knee hurts, the other side goes through the stretches as a preventative measure. This gives that painful side a bit of a break on the exercises, eliminating any unnecessary or excess stress in your knee.

If you want to eliminate your knee discomfort once and for all, then check out the Fix My Knee Pain program here.

Take care!

Rick Kaselj, MS