What Are Some Exercises for Arthritis in the Knees?

By Cicely A. Richard

Arthritis in the knees occurs because wear and tear reduces cartilage that forms a cushion. Bones rub together without cartilage, leading to pain, swelling, stiffness and even deformity. Knee arthritis affects your golf game by making it difficult to walk the course and affecting your range of motion and follow-through when you swing the club. Exercises for arthritis in the knees decrease pain, increase flexibility and allow you to continue playing golf.

Knee/Leg Raises

Do seated knee exercises for arthritis. Use a straight-back chair for these exercises. Place both feet flat on the floor for knee raises, sitting up straight. Raise one knee about 3 or 4 inches off the floor and hold for 5 to 10 seconds. Lower to starting position. Repeat on opposite leg.

Do leg raises with or without resistance bands. Start with feet flat on the floor. Extend leg in front of you, getting the leg as straight as possible. You may experience pain at first, but range of motion improves the more you do this exercise. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds and slowly lower back to the floor. Repeat on the other leg.

You can use resistance bands by tying the band to one leg of the chair. Place your leg in the band just above the ankle and raise your leg. Do these exercises five times on each leg at least three times a week.

March in Place

Marching in place helps arthritis in the knees and is a mild cardiovascular workout. Stand up straight and raise one foot by bending at the knee. Raise your knee as high as possible, preferably to a 90-degree angle. Alternate each leg. Do this exercise for 2 minutes, using music to keep the beat. You can do this exercise before and after hitting the golf course. You can also do this exercise in water for about 30 minutes to get a cardiovascular workout that doesn't stress the knees. You can do marches in place as a cardio exercise at least five times a week. Working out in water is less stressful on arthritic knees.


Do kicking exercises for arthritis knee pain. Stand up straight for these exercises or use the back of a chair for added support. These exercises can be done with or without resistance bands around the leg of chairs. You do kick-forwards by using the hip to kick a slightly bent leg forward. Do not bend your waist. Hold your extended leg for 2 to 3 seconds. Return your leg to the starting position.

Support yourself by holding the back of the chair to do kick-backs. Extend your leg behind you and hold the position for 2 or 3 seconds. Return to the starting position.

Do side-kicks by holding the back of the chair with one hand and placing your other hand on your waist. Extend your leg on the side of your body, using only your hips. Hold for 2 or 3 seconds. Do 10 to 12 repetitions of each of these exercises on both legs at least three times a week.

About The Author

Based in Tucson, Ariz., Cicely A. Richard has been writing since 1996. Her articles have been published in the “Arizona Daily Star” newspaper and “ForeWord Magazine.” Richard earned Bachelor of Arts degrees in English and journalism from Louisiana State University.


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