Strengthen Your Knees: 6 Essential Exercises to Include in Your Routine

1. Squats: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Bend your knees and lower your body as if sitting back into a chair, keeping your back straight. Push through your heels to return to the starting position. Squats strengthen the quadriceps, hamstrings, and glutes, which support knee stability.

2. Lunges: Step forward with one foot and lower your body until both knees are bent at a 90-degree angle, keeping your front knee aligned with your ankle. Push back up to the starting position and repeat on the other side. Lunges improve leg strength and balance.

3. Step-Ups: Use a sturdy bench or step. Step up with one foot, then bring your other foot up to meet it. Step back down with the same foot that stepped up first. Alternate legs and repeat. Step-ups strengthen the quadriceps, hamstrings, and glutes.

4. Leg Press: Use a leg press machine or resistance bands. Press your feet against the platform and extend your legs until they are almost straight (avoid locking your knees). Bend your knees to lower the platform back down. Leg presses target the quadriceps and hamstrings.

5. Hamstring Curls: Use a hamstring curl machine or resistance bands. Bend your knees to lift the weight or resistance toward your buttocks, contracting your hamstring muscles. Slowly lower the weight back down. Hamstring curls strengthen the back of the thighs.

6. Calf Raises: Stand with your feet flat on the ground. Rise up onto your toes, lifting your heels off the ground, then lower back down. Calf raises target the calf muscles, which provide stability for the knees.

Incorporate these essential exercises into your workout routine to strengthen the muscles surrounding the knees and improve overall knee stability.