If you’re struggling with pain, swelling, or stiffness in your knees, then it might be time to give your legs a massage. Whether you’re suffering from osteoarthritis or any other condition that affects the joints in your leg, there is plenty of value in treating yourself with a massage.
While it’s easier to go to physical therapy or get some prescription pain medication, that’s not always an option. So, we will show you how you can massage the joints in your knees and why this treatment can be beneficial.
Below, we are going to take a look at how to massage your knee joint to reduce swelling and pain while increasing blood flow, strength, and flexibility. So without further ado, let’s get right into it.
Best Practices for Knee Joint Massages
The most important thing when performing any kind of self-massage is safety. It helps to chat with your physician to ensure that a massage would be an appropriate treatment because there are specific massage techniques that might not work or that might worsen a painful joint.
Furthermore, if you suffer from any of the following health conditions, giving yourself a knee massage could make things slightly worse:
- High blood pressure
- Varicose veins
We also can’t stress enough how important it is to remember that massages are meant to alleviate pain, not worsen it. If you find that your pain worsens when you massage your knee, you should stop massaging immediately – ‘no pain, no gain’ should not be your mentality here.
If you’re willing to attempt to massage your knee by yourself, these techniques will help you get the most out of it. These techniques can be done with a lubricant or without one, such as moisturizing cream and even over pants that are loose-fitting.
- Start by tapping the palm of your hands on the lower, middle, and upper sections of the thigh. Ensure that your pressure is always light and that you are tapping for about 60 seconds on each leg before carrying on.
- Repeat this process twice before continuing to the next step.
- Now, sit down with your leg extended and your heel touching the floor. With your palm, move from the top of your thigh to the area right above your knee. Release all pressure, then repeat this motion at least five times.
- Repeat this motion on your inner and outer thighs, completing at least five motions in either area.
- After you are done with your thigh, press your fingers firmly into the surrounding tissue near your knee. Move this tissue backward and forward in short movements, completing five repetitions from the bottom, top, outside, and inside of your knee.
- To finish off, sit up with your legs extended in front of you, and use your palm to glide down your leg to your knee, over the outer part of your thigh, then back to the starting position. Repeat this motion five times before you complete your massage.
Repeating this technique daily can help alleviate some of the pain you feel in your knee joint.
If you are looking for an even more in-depth guide to giving yourself a good knee massage, we suggest The Knee Pain Guru. It’s a guidebook that will provide you with all of the tips and tricks you need to give yourself a knee massage that will help alleviate pain.
If you’re not too sure of performing a massage on yourself but want to receive the treatment anyway, then the next best thing is to seek the help of a professional massage therapist. These are trained professionals who will be able to perform the massage style that would offer you the most pain relief benefits.
Here are some helpful guidelines that you should follow when visiting a massage therapist:
- Communicate any pain you might be feeling during your massage. The goal here is to reduce your pain, not inflame it, so aggravating the sensitive area with overly-aggressive treatments is counterintuitive.
- Be honest and transparent with your massage therapist regarding your condition, discussing things like which activities or movements are causing you pain. This will help the professional cater the treatment to make sure that it is as effective as possible.
- If you’ve never been to a therapist, ask your doctor about any therapists they might know and recommend.
The Benefits of a Good Knee Massage
Since there are so many prescribed knee pain treatments with undesirable side effects, with many being of limited benefit, you might find yourself left searching for alternative options. A knee massage is one such treatment, and several studies have found that massaging an arthritic or painful joint can offer a range of benefits, such as:
- Reduced swelling
- Improved circulation
- Increased blood flow
- Reduced overall pain and stiffness
- Joint fluid replenishment
Massages don’t just have benefits for your joint pain. They can also improve the tone and overall flexibility of the muscles in your leg that lend stability and support to the affected knee.
While these are certainly some essential benefits, what is genuinely impactful is the effect that they might have on your daily life. Research has suggested that massage therapy can positively affect pain levels, daily function, and stiffness in individuals who struggle with osteoarthritis and other conditions in the knees. This is particularly true in the short term for mitigating pain flare-ups.
Another benefit of massage therapy is that it has little to no side effects associated with the treatment. While this intervention is not designed to replace more traditional treatments, like weight loss, physical therapy, and pain medication, it can be a fantastic supplement to these treatment options that rarely have negative consequences.
Feel Good Knees offers a fantastic solution for fast-acting relief from knee pain. It is a guide based on a centuries-old tradition capable of reducing your knee pain by as much as 50%, which works well in conjunction with traditional medicines or massage therapy.
When Should You See a Doctor?
While there are definitely some benefits to be had from massaging sore and arthritic knees, it is essential to pay close attention to any other essential symptoms or signs that might suggest it’s time to go to a doctor. While experiencing some knee pain does not mean that you’re dying, it might be time to visit your physician if the pain progressively worsens or you experience swelling, redness, or warmth in your knee.
Furthermore, if you are also experiencing fever or challenges with bearing weight through your legs that accompany your knee pain, you should seek some professional help. You could have an underlying condition that is causing these issues. With the help of a medical professional, you will be able to alleviate your symptoms and, hopefully, eliminate the condition altogether.
While it is typically a better solution to visit a physical therapist or get prescription medication to manage your pain, you may prefer to try some at-home options first. As you can see above, there are a few different ways you can treat your knee joints, with massaging them yourself at home being one of the best. We hope that the steps above have helped you in your journey to pain-free knee joints.