These 4 Moves Can Help to Build Stronger Knees

Brett Williams
Photo credit: Shotzbyalex/Charlee Atkins
Photo credit: Shotzbyalex/Charlee Atkins

From Men's Health

Photo credit: Men's Health/Eric Rosati
Photo credit: Men's Health/Eric Rosati

No matter how or why you exercise, you're probably used to training to target specific muscles—just think about all of the biceps curls and crunches you've done in your life. But not every body part gets the same amount of love. That's partly because some muscles are just easier to isolate, but others might be neglected because it's less obvious exactly how to focus your attention on them.

Case in point: your knees. Yes, they're joints, not muscles—but there are muscles supporting them which you can work to help to promote healthy function. "The muscles of the thigh act on the knee by either bending or extending the leg," says trainer Charlee Atkins, C.S.C.S. That mean that your quads and hamstrings are largely responsible for that movement, and that you'll want to work on strengthening those muscles when you train for stronger knees.

Atkins designed this four move series of exercises specifically to do just that. Each movement has a different focus; you'll target your hamstrings and quads, and work to develop stability in your hips. You'll need a yoga mat for your back, a short platform, and a chair or bench to do the workouts. If you're more advanced, grab a weight for the chair get-up.

Perform each exercise for either 45 seconds or 8 to 12 reps

  • Feet-Elevated Hip Raise (hamstrings focus)

  • Right Side-Lying Clamshell (hip stabilizer)

  • Left Side-Lying Clamshell (hip stabilizer)

  • Chair Get-Up (quad focus)

  • Hamstring Walk-Out

Take on the whole series on a lower body training day as a circuit, or implement the exercises in your training split.

Want to learn more moves from Atkins? Check out our series full of her workout tips, Try Her Move. You can also take on her new 30 day challenge in our streaming All Out Studio app, check out her Le Sweat workout app, and follow her on Instagram to find out when she's hosting live workouts from her living room.

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