Not performing exercises with proper form or performing the wrong types of exercises are sure-fire ways to hurt your knee while at the gym. In order to stay injury-free, you should know that the following four exercises can cause knee injuries:

Woman Performing Leg Extensions

Illustration 1-Leg extensions

Leg Extensions 

Leg extensions are infamous for causing knee injuries. Because weight is placed on the ankles, the knee experiences a great deal of added force as it extends, which increases the likelihood of a patella or quadriceps tendon injury. Gym-goers who want to train their quadriceps muscles should look to other exercises, specifically: properly performed squats and lunges.

Squats (When Not Performed Correctly) 

Squats can be a great way to train the quadriceps, abdominal, and lower back muscles. But, when not performed correctly, they can cause knee injuries. People interested in preventing knee injuries should go over proper squatting technique with an orthopedic specialist.

Woman Performing Squats

Illustration 2- A properly performed squat

Uphill Treadmill Running

People who begin an uphill running treadmill workout without warming up or without having experience are at an increased risk of straining their knee and/or hamstring. Generally speaking, running outside on soft grass decreases the risk of knee injuries.

Woman Running on Inclined Treadmill


Raising the leg while kicking places the knee in a vulnerable position. Upon impact with a bag or person, the knee can be easily injured, especially if the person performing the exercise has minimal kickboxing experience.

Man Kickboxing Punching Bag

Other Ways the Knee Can Be Injured While at the Gym 

In addition to the above-mentioned exercises, they knee can be injured when a person:

  • Lifts too much weight
  • Does not warm up properly
  • Does not monitor their technique
  • Is distracted

Luckily, all of these can be easily avoided with a little extra effort and attention.

What to Do If You Injure Your Knee at the Gym

If you injure your knee while at the gym and are in pain, please don’t hesitate to contact our offices to arrange an appointment with one of our knee specialists. Once your injury has been evaluated and diagnosed, you’ll be prescribed a treatment plan that gets you on the road to recovery. Expect to be back in the gym ASAP.

High Mountain Orthopedics specializes in bone, joint and muscle injuries- including knee injuries. Dr. William Matarese Dr. Tony Wanich and Dr. Sherwin Su have over 25 years of combined experienced treating orthopedic and sports injuries. Our practice uses a multi-disciplinary approach that includes physical therapy and activity modification. If surgery is necessary, our team utilizes the latest advancements in Minimally Invasive and Arthroscopic procedures to expedite the healing process. If you are suffering from a bone, joint or muscle injury – contact our offices today!  .

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