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George Demirakos is the author of Fix My Knee, a guide for preventing and healing injuries to the knees.
There are two types of injuries that can cause pain in the knees. George identifies these two types as traumatic and non-traumatic. Traumatic injuries are those that occur from a hit or fall, which can include sprains, or pulled ligaments, or strains, which are pulled muscles and/or tendons. Tendonitis, an irritation of the tendon, can also occur.
For those who like to run, George recommends warming up properly by jogging in place for 5 to 10 minutes. It is also important to stretch out the muscles by holding for about one minute each time. Some people prefer to run barefoot, which can be beneficial for knee health since more foot muscles are being used and strengthened as a result.
For those who like to lift weights, George explains the importance of using good form during lunges, deadlifts, squats, and hack squats to preserve knee health. The number one mistake made during squats is letting the knees fall in, which changes the body’s alignment, puts stress on the knees, and can cause injury. Having too little of an arch in the lower back and lowering to 90 degrees or less are two other common mistakes. With deadlifts, use one overhand and one underhand grip, which will help improve grip strength. With lunges, make sure your knee does not go past the front of your foot. In any exercise, it’s important to first get the proper form and then add more weight over time.
In regards to food and promoting knee health, fatty fish such as salmon and tuna are great options. Pineapples and papayas have enzymes that help with healing an injured tendon. Green leafy vegetables are rich in Vitamin D, which can reduce inflammation. Conversely, sugar is not recommended, as it can promote inflammation in the knee. Olive oil is preferred over other oils such as sunflower oil. Smoking and alcohol should also be avoided.
To learn more about Fix My Knee or to connect with George Demirakos, visit http://www.georgedemirakos.com.
Today we'll discuss pain and injury. When we start an exercise program and begin pushing ourselves, most of us expect we will feel some pain. It can be difficult for people to know when enough is enough, when to carry on and when to stop. In this episode, I want to help you identify when to push and when to stop.
When we work on our muscles, we tear the muscle fiber down. Our bodies were designed to respond to this. The muscles are repaired and in that process, they're made bigger and stronger. But this can only happen when we make sure to get appropriate rest and take in the right amount of protein. The cycle entails the following: challenge, feed, and recover. During the challenge phase, it is common to have a little bit of discomfort and pain. And it’s fine to continue with such pain.
When you're new to resistance exercise, it is not uncommon to suffer rather extreme muscle soreness. It means that you've done enough work with that muscle to elicit growth. You'll want to ensure you give the muscle enough time to recover. It takes roughly 48 – 72 hours to recover from intense resistance exercise.
Another type of pain, which is most often associated with running is called a stitch. It is a sharp pain in the lower abdomen. This is believed to occur when there is a mismatch between abdominal muscles and the diaphragm. The stitch can be very painful, bu it is nothing to worry about.
Injuries require a lot more care. The previous pain issues we covered will go away with rest. With injuries, that's usually not the case.
Most common exercise-induced injuries are damage to a tendon, ligament, muscle or bone. You should make sure you seek medical attention for injuries. The doctor will give you information on how to repair the damage and begin rehabilitation. I can't stress enough how important it is to follow your doctor's instructions. Injuries can put an end to exercise permanently if you don't address the underlying issue.
How you should approach pain and injury will depend on the nature of the pain. Make sure you properly asscess your pain and injury before you decide how to go ahead. There is some pain to get gain, but you'll need to know which type of pain is getting you gains or is going to sideline you.