How to Protect Knees on Elliptical

How to Protect Knees on Elliptical

Knee pain can be caused for various reasons, including medical or health conditions. And without a doubt, it can be so annoying, especially when you are trying to do some workout on an elliptical. However, this knee pain during elliptical exercise can be reduced unless you have a medical condition.

It is normal to feel pain in the first few days if you are exercising after a while. You need to spend some time on the workout to make your body habituated with your fitness program.

But, if the pain remains the same for a few days, you need to check some issues like, is your home elliptical machine right for you? Are you following proper posture on the elliptical? Or, are you overusing from the beginning?

If you are not sure yet, let’s drive deep with every scenario.

Common Causes of Knee Pain on Elliptical

As I mentioned earlier, knee pain while using the elliptical machine can be caused by many reasons. And you might need different tricks or even medical treatment depending on your condition. If the pain is bad or unbearable, it’s better to pay a visit to your doctor. On the other hand, if your knee needs treatment, it should be examined properly. Anyways, here are some common reasons behind knee pain.

  • Aging
  • Extra weight or obesity
  • Previous injury
  • Poor muscle flexibility
  • Bad posture during exercise

These are some of the most common reasons for knee pain. However, it can also be some medical conditions, and in that case, it’s better to leave it to the doctor. Here are some medical conditions related to knee pain.

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Gout
  • Pseudogout
  • Patellofemoral pain syndrome

How to Protect Knees on Elliptical

Now that we have an idea about the causes of knee pain, we can talk about how to prevent that. So here are some Do’s and Don’ts on the elliptical for knee pain.

The Do’s

  • Warm-up before every session
  • Take it slow
  • Maintain proper posture (Keep your body steel)
  • Try to move only with the legs and hands (keeping the body steady like doing squats)
  • Keep your back straight
  • Take enough breaks
  • Wear knee brace
  • Try to increase muscle flexibility
  • Stop if you feel knee pain

The Don’ts

  • Don’t go too fast
  • Don’t start without proper setup
  • Don’t overdo
  • Don’t rock back and forth
  • Avoid standing on your toes
  • Don’t lean forward on the handles

So, here are pretty much a quick guide about what you should do and avoid on an elliptical if you have a bad knee. Let’s get deeper into this and see what else you can do to prevent the annoying knee pain.

Pre and Post Workout

We always forget one thing. That is the pre-workout warm-up and post-workout stretching. If you warm up before riding the elliptical. It will ready your muscles for workouts and reduce the risk of workout pain. And, stretching can manage over-stressed muscles and reduce the risk of workout pain.

So, please warm-up before exercise and follow post-workout stretching management.

Knee Brace for Elliptical

The best way of protection is prevention. And, in this case, a knee brace or knee guard is the best prevention. This effectively absorbs the stress from the knees and makes it easier. Using a knee brace will potentially help you with your knee pain. Don’t wear it too tight or too loose; just about the pressure that suits you, and the pain should decrease.

And you’ll find these knee braces at a pretty affordable price on local gym stores or online shops like Amazon. Here’s a good one, POWERLIX Knee Compression Sleeve

Maintaining Proper Posture

Proper body posture is a vital issue for all kinds of exercise. If your body posture is wrong, it may cause some serious problems like back pain, knee pain, muscle injury, etc. So, please maintain correct posture while you ride on your elliptical machine as well as for other workouts.

What you’ll have to do is keep your body straight. Do not go up and down along with the elliptical motion. The proper motion should keep your body steel and move the hands and legs, almost like squats. Keep your back straight, look forward, and paddle.

Here’s a nice video about how you can maintain a proper posture on the elliptical by EverFit Strategies.

Avoid Overuse

Overusing or pushing too much can be another reason for your knee pain. Remember, if you have a knee problem, slow and steady is the way to go. Take enough breaks between your workout sessions. Try out interval training.

The first step will be finding out your limits; it can be 10 minutes of workout per session, up to 5-6 sessions. Sometimes people tend to get too excited and try to exercise too much within a certain time. But that might not be the best idea in the long run.

So, keep in mind and check your overuse to reduce knee pain.

Right Workout Equipment

Well, ellipticals are awesome workout machines without a doubt. They are flexible as well; you can have a full-body workout with a device like this. Furthermore, you can customize the intensity and make suitable adjustments. And for this situation, we want low-impact workouts.

So if you are planning to buy one of these fantastic machines while beating the hell out of your knee, then no worries! You can check out our Best Home Elliptical Reviews post; we’ve included some quality machines that’ll be gentle on your knees.

Also, you have to find out the right workout equipment for you; it doesn’t have to be elliptical to get the best workout. For example, a Recumbent Bike will be more suitable for you if you have a bad knee. It’s also great for rehab and low-impact workouts.


As I discourse above, you need to check these issues if you are facing knee pain. I hope these tips will help you protect your knees from the elliptical machine.

Remember, this is not a medical suggestion. These tips are only here to help you protect your knees from the elliptical workout. So, if you feel any discomfort or pain, please seek medical attention immediately or call 911 (or the health helpline number of your country).

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