As Minnesota runners step out to enjoy the warm weather, we find far too many of them coming into Twin Cities Movement complaining about knee pain while running. Commonly known as runner’s knee, this ailment can leave you on the couch instead of enjoying the running season.

When it comes to injury prevention, it’s better to be proactive instead of reactive. This is why we’re sharing a few of our favorite warm-up exercises for runners.

Keep in mind, when we do these exercises, we do very little work with the knee.

As we’ve said many times before, pain in an area isn’t necessarily a result of injury to that area. We find often that pain in the knee results from a lack of mobility in the hip or the ankle. In this case we focus more on the hip, because it’s not likely that anyone will have too much hip mobility, or stability.

The knee is a stability segment.

We want a little movement, but we want most of the movement to come from the hip and ankle. Moving up the chain, we”ll also focus on a little bit of core stability.

Joint By Joint Approach

The Joint-By-Joint Approach. Popularized by Michael Boyle and Gray Cook

If you’d like to watch the full video, click here.

Side Bridge Hinge

First, start on your side, lounging on your elbow. The next thing you’re going to do is activate the scapula. Once you’ve done these two things, simply push yourself away from the floor with your arm and your side. Lastly, you’re going to finish the movement with a hip hinge. All you have to do is thrust your pelvis forward to create a straight line from shoulder to knee.

Shin Box Hinge

The shin box hinge is along the same lines as the side bridge hinge, just slightly more challenging. From the position that Dr. Brandon is in, he’s going to thrust his pelvis forward.

Banded Stability

Lastly, we’re going to do some banded stability work. With this exercise, you’re focusing on one leg at a time. You need to be in a hinged position with a stable core and one leg planted. All you have to do is bring the weight away from the planted leg while keeping your core stable.

As usual, you”ll do 8-10 reps per side for any of these exercises. Do them before your day, run, or any other workout. Don’t let runner’s knee become a part of your running season. We like to have people warm up for life!

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