The muscles that surround the knee being the quadriceps in front of the leg, the hamstrings in the back of the thigh and calf muscles all are involved in having a strong and functional knee. if one of these groups are not doing their job it can lead to muscle imbalance and associated knee pain or fatigue.
In this article I will mention just a several of the exercises that an older adult can do that will assist in strengthening their knees. Strong muscles act as a supportive brace for your knee. If that support has been weakened either through a previous injury or lack of physical activity the knees will either buckle upon standing or cause some discomfort when walking. If your orthopedist has ruled out a knee injury or severe osteoarthritis then muscle weakness could be the main issue.
For simplicity sake There are three exercises that will strengthen you entire leg and the muscles that support your knees.
1. Calf raises. Standing on a flat firm surface using a counter top or other non-moveable object stand up as up as high as you can on your tip toes and hold that position for a slow count of five. Complete 10 repetitions to start with working your way up to 20. These are also excellent for your standing balance.
2. Short-arc quadriceps exercises. Lie flat place either a rolled pillow that is high and firm or take a five gallon bucket and place it under your knees. Place either a rolled up blanket or pillow inside the bucket if the weight of your legs buckles the bucket. Lift your feet up in the air making sure the back of your knees do not lift off the bucket. Hold your feet in the air for a slow count of five. This will place direct emphasis on your thigh muscles. Complete 10 repetitions to start with working your way up to 20.
3. Straight Leg Raises. Lie down on a firm surface. Take one of your legs and straighten it out. take your opposite leg and bend your knee. Take both your arms and place them by your side. Lift the straightened leg up even with your opposite knee and hold that position for a slow count of five then lower slowly. Again start out with 10 repetitions and work your way up to 20.
Follow these exercises from one to two times a day. If your are consistent with these exercises you should see some results. As you get stronger then you graduate to more complicated exercises.
There are many exercises out there that will strengthen your knees and your entire leg. Find the ones that work for you and give them a serious try. Strong legs are needed for a strong foundation no matter what your age.