Your patella, or kneecap, connects your quadriceps muscles to your shine bone via tendon and ligament. You have a groove in the end of your thigh bone to accommodate your moving kneecap. Knee patella dislocation occurs when the tendon that holds you patella in place slips out of this femoral groove. The symptoms include immediate swelling, extreme pain and joint instability according to the New England Musculoskeletal Institute. Thigh-strengthening exercises will help rehab your injured knee.
Using a stationary bike after dislocating your patella is an effective way to restore range of motion to your injured joint. The bike also works to strengthen your quadriceps muscles. Once you are able to move your joint without a lot of pain, begin cycling for five minutes, three times a day. As you knee improves, increase your cycling time until you are able to ride for 30 minutes at a time.
Isometric Quadriceps Contractions
Isometric exercises are critical for rehabilitation when strengthening the muscles without placing undue stress on the joint is warranted, notes the Sports Fitness Advisor website. The isometric quadriceps contraction allows you to gently restore strength to your quadriceps muscles without straining your injured knee. Sit on the floor with your injured leg extended in front of you. With your toes pointing up, contract your quadriceps muscles. Hold the contraction for five seconds, and then relax. Repeat this exercise five times and complete several sets throughout the day.
Towel Quadriceps Contractions
Once you are able to complete quadriceps contractions without pain, increase the difficulty of the exercise by placing a rolled towel under your leg, three inches above your knee. With your toes pointing up, lift your foot off the floor until your leg is straight by contracting your quadriceps. Hold the contraction for a count of one, and then lower your foot back to the floor. Complete five repetitions and repeat the exercise several times throughout the day.
Strengthen your quadriceps muscle with leg extensions only after you are able to perform the towel contraction exercise pain-free. Sit tall in a chair or at the edge of a table so that your leg can hang freely toward the floor. Contract your quadriceps to straighten your leg. Pause at the top of the movement and then, with control, lower your leg. Complete five to 10 repetitions and repeat the exercise three to five times throughout the day.
This exercise stretches the quadriceps muscles and should be performed at the end of your exercise routine. Stand next to a wall and place one hand on it for balance. Transfer your weight to your uninjured leg and lift the heel of your injured leg by bending your knee. Reach back with your hand, grab the front of your foot and gently pull your heel toward your butt until you feel a stretch in the front of your thigh. Hold the stretch for 15 seconds, relax, and then repeat the stretch.
REFERENCES & RESOURCES
- New England Musculoskeletal Institute: Knee Conditions and Treatments
- American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons: Unstable Kneecap
- Sports Fitness Advisor: Isometric Exercises and Static Strength Training
- Orthoseek Orthopedic Topics: Chondromalacia Patellae
- eOrthopod: Patellar Dislocation in Young, Active Adults