Though the human body itself is maybe the greatest example of complex systems working with one another to produce almost unimaginable results and incredibly efficient engineering, the reality of the situation is that the knee in particular is the weak spot in this “chain”.
Designwise (and from a purely engineering standpoint, of course) the knee is an absolute mess.
To work properly, your knee has to effectively move dozens of different tendons, ligaments, and bones in perfect concert, all while maintaining only two directions – backwards and forwards (with “stops” along the way).
Any inefficiency along the line is going to cause a tremendous amount of damage, and any extra force generated at any particular point in time can cause these joints to wear out much faster than most any other body part. That spells big trouble for folks hoping to maintain a happy, healthy, and active lifestyle.
But that doesn’t mean that you aren’t going to be able to “build” a better knee with specifically targeted exercise programs. This is the best way to “future proof” your knee against major injuries and is most certainly the most effective way to avoid catastrophic knee surgeries that have definitely come a long way but are anything but picture-perfect.
Here are a handful of tips and tricks you’ll want to keep in your back pocket to protect your knees going forward.
Get regular screenings to find inefficiencies and weaknesses
One of the biggest advantages that modern medical screening has to offer is the ability to go into almost any medical facility and receive a variety of different scans that can allow you to see exactly what’s going on beneath the surface of your knee so that you can tailor a workout program to attack inefficiencies and strengthen any weaknesses.
Your doctor will be able to recommend and prescribe a whole host of different scans, and they’ll be able to interpret all of the results so that you know how to best address any issues you find along the way.
Strengthen your muscles and flex your joints and tendons
While you will certainly want to spend a considerable amount of time strengthening the muscles that support your knees (as well as the muscles that are opposing those muscles so that there aren’t any weaknesses), you also need to flex your joints and tendons intelligently to improve your flexibility and recover faster from many micro-injuries.
Yoga is fantastic for doing exactly that. Start to incorporate it into your regular training program and you’ll be able to create truly bulletproof knees going forward.