Dr. Bert Mandelbaum, an orthopedist and team physician for U.S. soccer, created an exercise regimen proven to reduce knee-injury risk by 46 percent. We asked him to design a version for everyday men and women, not just elite athletes. Not only does this knee workout increase balance and correct how you land and pivot, it’s also a total-body routine that, done twice a week, will make you stronger, faster, and more agile.
The Best Knee Workout for Stronger Joints
1. Running Mash-Up (shown above, left)
On a treadmill, street, or track, run forward for 15 seconds, then back-pedal for 15 seconds; side shuffle on one side for 15 seconds, then the other for 15 seconds. Do this sequence five times total, moving at a speed that allows perfect form.
Stand holding a lightweight kettlebell in left hand overhead, elbow locked. Lunge straight forward, to 12 o’clock, on right leg. Press through heel and return to start. Repeat, lunging slightly to the right side (at 1 o’clock). Continue lunging in place, working your way around the right side of the clock and doing backward lunges for 4, 5, and 6 o’clock. Switch legs and repeat on left leg, lunging forward for 12, 11, and 10 o’clock, to the side for 9 o’clock, and backward for 8, 7, and 6 o’clock. Kettlebell should remain in left hand, with arm locked overhead, for entire set. Rest for 30 seconds, then repeat sequence with right arm. Do three full sets.