I have bed knees as well, 6 surgeries in fact, the best for toning my legs that I have found has been Pilates. I do the element Pilates workout with the mini ball and I skip the ones where you are on your knees. Swimming is also an excellent choice as others have pointed out as well as water aerobics.
“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” Mahatma Ghandi
December Minutes: 406
Fitness Minutes: (23,372)
829 3/22/14 4:22 P
I have had significant issues with my knee, which a physical therapist helped me adjust to, and I can now do most exercises, although I avoid jumping. A lot of knee issues are actually caused by the muscles around the knee not being strong enough to support it, so strengthening those takes the pressure off your knees.
Swimming is my favorite exercise because it is low-impact, but still builds strength because your body has to work much harder because of the resistance of the water. Strengthening the muscles in your thighs and butt makes them look firmer and smaller, even though as people have said, you cannot actually reduce fat in any particular area.
If you have formed the habit of checking on every new diet that comes along, you will find that, mercifully, they all blur together, leaving you with only one definite piece of information: french-fried potatoes are out. ~~Jean Kerr
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. ~~Anais Nin
Life is too short for self-hatred and celery sticks. ~~Marilyn Wann
Pounds lost: 39.0
Fitness Minutes: (213,750)
3/22/14 3:37 P
As the others have noted, we can't spot reduce areas of our body we don't like. When it comes to gaining or losing weight, what matters most is what we eat. Good nutrition is what takes the weight off and keeps it off. Exercise is what keeps our bodies fit. In short, you can't outrun a bad diet with exercise. If you want to lose weight, you have to learn to eat right and watch your portions first.
Now, speaking as someone with bad knees, what you do depends on your knees. Perhaps the reason you have pain when doing squats is because you're not doing them properly. Squats may seem like simple things, but doing them with poor form can cause knee pain. Do you have a gym membership ? if so, take a group weight training class. Have the instructor watch your form. They will correct it. that should help.
You could also consider doing squats with a stability ball. This is an example of a ball squat. This should help take pressure off your knees.
Can you walk upstairs without any discomfort to your knees ? If you can climb stairs, take the stairs whenever you can. Walking up stairs is an excellent activity that will help strengthen your lower body.
Mostly, can't emphasize enough the importance of eating right and watching your portions if you want to lose weight. We don't get to decide where the weight comes off. However, with a nutritious diet and a little exercise, you will lose weight off your entire body with time.
Look to see if there is a super slow training facility near you. It is a 12 minute a week weight and resistance work out that does LOTS of things but in your case can improves the support around the joints without causing further injury. The benefits are explained well in the Body By Science book by McGuff.
Fitness Minutes: (4,770)
294 3/22/14 10:28 A
The forst things to remember is that you can't really spot reduce. There is no way to make your body use the fat off of your thighs vs off of anywhere else on your body. Strength training (ie squats) are more for toning muscle than losing fat.
The other thing is that you don't say exactly what the problem is with your knees. That is something that you will probably need to discuss with your physician or other medical professional because the wrong kids of exercise can cause more damage depending on what the problem is in the first place. Meanwhile, low/no impact cardio exercise (i.e. swimming, biking, etc) can help with burning calories and getting you moving. Good luck!
Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.- Mark Twain
Burning fat is an all-body process, and you can't control where you lose weight from. Energy is delivered to the muscles via the bloodstream, NOT from being absorbed from surrounding fat stores. Squats will develop the thigh muscles, but will do absolutely nothing about the overlying layer of fat.
Just do whatever exercise you CAN do, and watch your intake, and some of it will naturally come off the thighs and butt.
The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.
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