Jumper’s knee, or knee pain relating to the impact of jumping, can hold people back from playing basketball due to the nature of the sport. Basketball is a sport of explosion and jumping. It can be painful when having knee problems as knee pain will surface itself when landing after a jump. This article will propose how to avoid knee pain, and how to fix the problem if you are currently experiencing it.
Do not play in hard floor environments
Basketball is a sport that varies on its courts. There are indoor and outdoor courts. Avoid the outdoor and cement courts, or at least play on them less often than indoor courts.
Indoor courts have springs under the wooden floors to cushion your fall, outdoor courts do not. If you play on outdoor courts a lot, consider playing less outside.
Wear proper shoes
Shoes without good shock support will make your body and joints feel ground impact more. Make sure you are wearing proper basketball designed shoes, as most of them have shock resistance engineering built into them.
Basketball shoes also allow you to have good grip. This is essential, as the more you are slipping on the court, the more knee tension is created.
Another helpful way to add to the cushion is wearing thicker socks. Socks that are double layered allow basketball shoes to be more snug, which inevitable gives you better, safer movement. It also reduces impact.
Work on your mobility
Knee pain might be rooted in a lack of joint and muscle length. Stretch your joints and muscles to lengthen the quad and hamstrings to allow less force on the knees.
Stretches that you should focus on should be ankle, quad, and hip related. To help take stress off the knee, these muscles, joints, and tendons should all be strong. Knee injury prevention relies on strengthening the surroundings of the knee.
What are these stretches?
I have another article, the stretches to dunk that highlights every stretch that can help your mobility, which relates to knee health as well. If you want more details, I would suggest taking a look at that.
However, the stretches I would recommend are the pigeon pose, the kneeling quad stretch, Achilles stretch, and the hamstring toe touches. Those should lengthen and mobilize the hips, ankles, quads, and hamstring muscles to get that knee sitting in good company.
Let your knees get used to impact and stress
Knee tendons, ligaments, and joints can all be strengthened like any other. Once you have rehabbed the knee and it is not prone to injury through rest, try to strengthen it by putting the knee through minor stress.
Here are a couple of examples.
Jumping down a small step. Make sure the step is a good size to put stress but not strain on the knee. This will allow your knee to get stronger at absorbing shock from a landing.
Squatting with knee over toe. If you have ankle mobility, do not be afraid to allow your knee to extend outward over your feet. You will feel a slight tension on the knee bend, however, if there is no pain, this can be a good way to strengthen that knee.
Lets wrap it up
When using all these tips, remember if you feel any type of pain, you should rest and ice. Tread carefully in such a delicate area like the knee. However, do not be afraid to push your body with mobility, as you will feel a little irritable trying to progress in that area.
Feel free to check out my other articles on basketball and athletic improvement, click the blog at the top of the page for more information.