How to Protect Your Knees from Workplace Injury

We see many knee injuries I & O Medical Centers. Workplace injuries are extremely common, but did you know there are steps you can take to help prevent them from happening? If you follow these steps, it just may keep you on the job and in action!

1. Wear proper footwear.

Proper footwear is key to preventing knee injuries. Shoes with an arch and plenty of padding can help absorb the day to day wear and tear on your knees.  Runners and triathletes know the super thick sole and padding help protect your knees. You don’t have to be an athlete to enjoy the benefits of Hokas! You can also purchase arch supports to add to your shoes or work boots to give that extra bit of support for your knees.

2. Strengthen the joint.

Weight training can increase the muscle strength of the surrounding tissue. This allows the muscles to absorb more of the shock from activities and lessen the impact on the knees. Leg extensions, leg presses, straight leg raises, wall squats, hamstring curls, calf raises, and side leg raises done 2 times a week, 12-15 repetitions with light to no weight is the best way to help build those muscles.

3. Take turmeric.

This natural anti-inflammatory taken daily is a life saver. The pain relief has been said to be the equivalent of 800mg of ibuprofen. Look for a supplement of at least 1000mg that also contains bioperine. (black pepper extract). Ask your physician before taking turmeric if you have any pre existing medical conditions. Along with being anti-inflammatory, it also thins the blood.

4. Use proper form when lifting at work.

Don’t lift from a standing position with your knees locked. A slight bend in the knees is easier on the joint.

Avoid kneeling unless you are on a soft, padded surface. 

5. Maintain a healthy weight.

Excess body weight puts undo strain on your knees. Studies have shown that losing one pound takes four pounds of stress from your knee joint. Imagine the cumulative effect that will have on your knees! A 10 lb weight loss would take 40 lbs of pressure off of this precious joint. 

6. Know when to stop.

If despite these steps you find yourself with knee pain, don’t be a hero! Do not try to push through the pain. A good guide is if the pain improves with movement, you are okay to continue. If movement causes an increase in pain, sharp pain, shooting pain or anything out of the ordinary, stop the activity immediately. It is best to come in and see one of our amazing board certified occupational physicians to prevent damaging the knee further. I & O Medical Centers has got your back.