Knees take a beating during basketball games. They are constantly bent, then straightened, as players run up and down the court. It’s no wonder that knee injuries are so common in the sport.
But you don’t have to stop playing basketball just because you’re worried about injuring your knees.
There are things you can do to strengthen your knees and make them less susceptible to injury.
How Do Basketball Players Protect Their Knees?
One of the most common injuries in basketball is a knee injury. Knees are susceptible to injuries because they are constantly used and abused during games. Basketball players can protect their knees by following a few simple guidelines.
Players always warm up before playing. They also stretch regularly and do exercises that strengthen the knees. It is also important to wear the correct shoes and padding. Basketball players also protect their knees by wearing knee pads. Knee pads protect the knees from injuries such as bruises, scrapes, and cuts. They also help to prevent the player from getting injured if they fall.
Players should avoid contact with other players as much as possible and be careful when jumping or landing. If they do experience a knee injury, they should seek medical attention right away.
How to Strengthen Knees for Basketball?
The knees are one of the most important joints in the body for basketball players because they are responsible for explosive movements like jumping and landing. With this in mind, try the following to strengthen your knees.
When your knees are weak, you’re more likely to get injured, so it’s important to do exercises that will help you strengthen them. Here are six exercises that will help you achieve that.
- Quadriceps Extensions:
This exercise helps to strengthen the quadriceps muscles on the front of your thigh. To do it, lie on your back on the floor and extend your legs straight up in the air. Then, using your quadriceps muscles, slowly lower your legs back down to the starting position.
- Glute Bridge:
This exercise helps to strengthen the gluteal muscles (the buttocks muscles) on the back of your body. To do it, lie flat on your back with feet flat on the ground and shoulder-width apart, legs bent to 90 degrees. Drive your heels into the ground, and lift your torso and upper legs into the air, extending your hips until your thighs and torso are in line with each other—like a bridge. Hold for two seconds, then lower yourself back to the starting position. Do 10 reps.
- Hamstring Curl with Resistance Band:
This exercise helps to tone and strengthen the hamstrings (the muscles on the back of your thigh). To do it, attach a resistance band around a sturdy post and lie facing down. After looping the band around your ankles, curl your legs up towards your butt, and squeeze your glutes at the top of the curl. Pause for two seconds before slowly lowering them back to the starting position.
This exercise helps to tone and strengthen the quads (the muscles on the front of your thigh) and glutes. To do it, stand with your feet hip-width apart, then step forward with your left foot and lower your body until your left knee is bent at a 90-degree angle. Pause, then push yourself back to the starting position. Repeat with your right leg.
This exercise helps to tone and strengthen the glutes and thighs. To do it, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, then squat down as if you’re sitting in a chair, keeping your back straight and your eyes focused ahead of you. Pause, then push yourself back to the starting position.
- Calf raises:
calf raises are a great exercise for strengthening the calves, which can also help protect the knees from injury.
Proper diet and hydration
For muscle growth, exercise goes hand in hand with a proper diet. Eat healthy meals that will help your muscles grow faster and stronger. Stronger muscles around your legs and especially around your knees are essential in protecting you from knee injuries.
In terms of hydration, this is very important, especially after a game. This is because when you play you tend to sweat a lot meaning your cell water level is low. This greatly affects the elasticity of your muscles and injuries making you more susceptible to injuries.
Pre- and post-workout stretch.
All great players know that it is not advisable to just surprise your body with insane rapid movements before a proper warm-up. A proper warm-up prepares and stretches your muscles and ligaments in preparation for vigorous work. It will ensure that your muscles and ligaments are not stiff when you go onto the court for a game.
With this in mind, post-workout stretches are also important. After an intense match, it is important to stretch your body to relieve the tension built up in the body. This also improves blood circulation which is important for muscle recovery. All in all, stretching saves your muscles from stress which is an important aspect to consider when knee protection is the main objective. Healthy muscles equal healthy knees.
Why Do My Knees Hurt After Basketball?
Basketball is a high-impact sport that can put a lot of stress on the knees. This may cause pain after playing and can potentially lead to long-term damage. While some pain after playing basketball is normal, it’s important to listen to your body and take measures to protect your knees in order to minimize the risk of long-term damage.
There are a few reasons why your knees might hurt after playing basketball.
One is that you could have injured them when you fell or twisted them. Another possibility is that the basketball court might be too hard or you might be wearing the wrong type of shoes. Sometimes, the pain might just be from overexerting yourself or from getting too sweaty. If your knees keep hurting even after taking some time off to rest, it’s a good idea to see a doctor find out what’s going on.
Be sure to stick to the above-mentioned tips to ensure your knees are healthy and injury-free. The last thing any basketball player could ant is a knee injury. With that in mind, play safe and all in all, be a good sportsman on the court.