Nagging knee pain can be disruptive and debilitating to live with. There can be various reasons for a painful knee, ranging from sports injuries to age-related degenerative changes. 

Common knee problems that cause pain include: 

  • Sprained or strained ligament (a strong band of tissue that holds your bones together).

  • Torn cartilage (a tough supporting tissue found throughout your body).

  • Tendonitis (inflammation of tendon, the tissue between your muscles and bones).

  • Arthritis (swelling and tenderness of your joints).

It is important to establish an exact diagnosis of your knee condition, recognize the causative factors, and rectify them to prevent the progression of the condition.

Now, let’s have a look at some common dos and don’ts of living with knee pain. 


1. Maintain healthy body weight. Follow the WHO (World Health Organization) guidelines to determine the appropriate body weight as per your height.

The mechanical pressure of excessive body weight can worsen an already damaged knee. Along with regular exercise, a balanced diet with adequate protein, calcium, and vitamin D, will not only help you maintain a healthy body weight but will also keep your joints healthy.

2. Exercise regularly. Cycling, swimming, and jogging are excellent exercises that prevent excessive strain on a painful knee. 

Compound exercises (exercises that work for multiple muscle groups at the same time) are a great way to keep in shape and strengthen those muscles.

3. Use knee support braces. It is important to externally support your knee during activities. 

There are numerous kinds of braces available, both over the counter and customizable, which should be used as per the recommendation of a specialist. 

Certain offloading braces help in changing the alignment of the leg to protect your knee.

4. Apply POLICE therapy in case of acute injuries. P.O.L.I.C.E. is an acronym that stands for Protection, Optimum Loading, Icing, Compression, and Elevation. 

After any acute trauma or sports injury to your knee, it is advisable to follow this therapy. Consult your doctor for more information.

5. Wear appropriate footwear. Avoid wearing tall heels for prolonged periods and preferably use soft cushioned footwear such as sports shoes for prolonged standing or exercising. 

Ask your doctor about appropriate footwear options for your knee condition. 


1. Avoid sitting cross-legged/squatting and reduce stair climbing. If you are developing advanced age-related degenerative knee changes or have knee pain due to an injury, such stressful activities can put undue stress on an already worn off knee.

2. Stay away from high-impact activities. Avoid activities such as jumping, or running on a treadmill or inclined hard surface, if you have a painful knee. 

There are better, low-impact ways to maintain fitness that will keep your joints happy, such as brisk walking.

3. Don't risk preventable falls and injuries. Many instances of accidental falls and injuries, which worsen your knee pain, are preventable. 

Ensure that your surroundings at home and work are well lit, the floor is free of clutter, and take support of railings on stairs and uneven surfaces. This will help you avoid serious injuries as well. 

4. Avoid taking too much rest. It is good to be careful and take rest when your knee is not in its best condition. However, too much rest can make your muscles weaker, which can worsen joint pain. 

Discuss with your doctor about exercises that are safe for your knees and continue to do them to keep your muscles working.

5. Don't ignore any knee pain. It is important to speak with your doctor if you feel your knee has been impacted by an injury or event or if you observe symptoms such as clicking sounds, instability, and knee stiffness. 

The doctor can evaluate your pain and prevent further injury.

The knee is one of the most important weight-bearing joints in your body. Knowing and judiciously following the common dos and don'ts would help in keeping your knee pain under check. 

Disclaimer: This article is written by the Practitioner for informational and educational purposes only. The content presented on this page should not be considered as a substitute for medical expertise. Please "DO NOT SELF-MEDICATE" and seek professional help regarding any health conditions or concerns. Practo will not be responsible for any act or omission arising from the interpretation of the content present on this page.