Chondromalacia exercises

by Nathan Wei, MD, FACP, FACR

Nathan Wei is a nationally known board-certified rheumatologist and author of the Second Opinion Arthritis Treatment Kit. It's available exclusively at this website... not available in stores.

Click here: Second Opinion Arthritis Treatment Kit

What is chondromalacia?

The major symptom of chondromalacia is aching beneath the patella (knee cap).

The ache is aggravated by activities such as climbing stairs, running, or bicycling.

Chondromalacia is caused by an imbalance of muscle development in the upper leg that then leads to abnormal forces being exerted on the patella. The undersurface of the knee cap starts to rub against the femur with the subsequent development of pain.

In order to speed recovery, an alteration in the type of exercise regimen may need to be made. Less intense running, cycling is a start if these are the activities that caused the problem. Switching to a lower impact type of exercise might also be advised.

Consider these exercises (but consult with your physician before attempting them):

1.While sitting on a bed and keeping your leg straight out in front, dorsiflex the foot (bend the toes towards your head) and hold this position for ten seconds. Release. Repeat ten times.

2.While sitting on a bed with your leg extended straight in front, dorsiflex your foot, then raise the leg off the bed six inches and hold it. Keep this position for ten seconds and release. Repeat ten times.

3.While sitting in a chair, extend your leg out straight inm front and hold for ten seconds. Release. Repeat ten times.

4.While sitting in a chair, place a foot under the bottom edge of a desk with the leg extended straight out. Slowly, lift the leg as though trying to lift the desk (but don't actually do it). Hold for 10 seconds then relax. Repeat 20 times and then do the same with the other leg. Repeat this exercise two-three times a day.

5.Hamstring stretching is also advised. Here's one stretch: While sitting in a chair, extend the leg straight out in front with the heel resting on the ground. Rest both hands on the knee and while keeping the leg straight, slowly slide the hands down the front of the knee towards the foot until a tightening sensation is felt in the hamstrings. Hold for 10 seconds, then relax. Repeat 20 times with both legs and perform the exercise two-three times a day.

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