Step 1: Improve Your Stride
Do you sit for long periods at work or at home? Do you find yourself slightly limping when you first start walking? Prolonged sitting actually changes the way that you walk. Areas of your hips, pelvis and spine lose their strength and flexibility. This changes the way your hips and spine move when you walk, increasing the load on your knees. Furthermore, with sitting, your quadriceps muscles weaken, leading to poor tracking of the patella (kneecap). Finally, your knee and hip cartilage health relies on a squeezing pressure from walking. With less walking in the day, the joint fluid does not circulate properly leading to a decrease in lubrication of the joints. How to walk better Walking is often the best medicine. Learning towalk properly is a big part of the rehabilitation of knee and hip pain. Here are some simple tips to help you improve your gait (the way you walk), and decrease the strain on your joints: 1.Whenwalking, try tomaintain a tall posture. This brings your spine and center of gravity into a natural position that allows your joints tomove more freely. Imagine a string gently pulling you upwards through the top of your head. 3.Avoid sitting for long periods. Get up and move around during the day at work or at home. Try to move out of a seated position at least every 30 minutes. 4.Be aware of how your hips are moving when you walk. Do you notice if one or both of your hips are slightly dipping? This is a sign of hip weakness. 5.Wear supportive shoes that provide adequate cushion to the instep. Avoid wearing shoes without ankle support such as sandals or high heels. 2.Whenwalking, focus on taking a larger, but natural stride length. Imagine hitting the ground more with your heel.
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