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Fixing knock knees and knee pain

Knocked knees or genu valgum is a condition that both knees turned inward instead of being straight.  Usually the person’s feet will also turn inward to what is commonly observed as ‘duck’s feet’. This is quite common in children. As the child grows up, the legs would generally revert to their normal position.  However, if it is observed that the child, reaching teenage years still have knocked knees, the common recommendation is to use either corrective surgery or orthotics.

In adults, there is generally no suggested cure for knocked knees. You may think that knocked knees is harmless- it just does not look good when you are walking.

But on a fisiological level,  knocked knees causes uneven weight distribution on your knees and adults with knocked knees would likely face chronic knee pain which may eventually led to osteoarthritis when approaching middle age. Intensive exercises such as running, mountain climbing, weight training using squats, etc could do more harm than good- causing more pressure placed on the knee. Even constant stretches, if done wrongly may end up causing muscles surrounding the knees to be overstretched and therefore loses its ability to support the shock effectively- causing the knees to have to bear more brunt of the weight. 

There is a very good article written by Dr Jolie Bookspan offering advice on how to fix knock knees without using surgery and orthotics. Dr Jolie had developed methods to fix injuries and improve training are used by military and top rehab centers around the world.

 She advocates a number of methods that I believe would be very helpful:

 http://www.drbookspan.com/KneePainArticle.html

There are also other useful articles related to injury and how to relieve conditions such as slipped disk.

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  • Breiona June 3, 2010, 12:52 am

    Well I have knock knees, im 14, and im over weight. Im tall so it doesnt look that bad. I hate having knock knees because I cant wear leggins r skinny jeans because my knees look crazy when I walk. I also cant wear anything short. I cant even wear shorts unless they cover my knees. I hate this so much.

  • Dan March 31, 2011, 10:06 pm

    Arthritis pain is mighty tough. This information is helpful, and I’m so grateful. Thank you.

  • matilda lily December 1, 2011, 9:09 pm

    Pls my right leg is knocked in nature,I feel so embarrased coming out in public,not only that,I will be participating in a beauty pageant next year,so I realy need something done fast,so dat I won’t be disqualiied because of my knock knee.what kind of exercise can I use to correct my knock knee.thank u very much.

    • Yin December 31, 2011, 7:45 pm

      Hi Matilda,
      For knock knee, I don’t think there is a quick cure as it is a structural issue. But being conscious when you walk- ie make sure that your knee does not turn inward. Also more stretching- usually for knock knee, one side of the hip is tight.
      All the best

  • Rebeka June 8, 2012, 9:57 pm

    Hi, I’m 14 and I have knees that are more turned inward and don’t close together, I’m not over weight, Im active but it makes it hard to walk for long periods of time.

    • Yin July 11, 2012, 10:20 pm

      Hi Rebeka,
      Even though not overweight, you can try to reduce the inward turn at a younger age.

  • Jewels August 7, 2012, 3:26 am

    Dear Yin,
    Hi, I am 14 years old and have knocked knees. I’m not over weight, it’s just that they never corrected themselves. My mom has taken me to special places where I have gotten X-rays taken. They told me there was absolutely nothing to do about it. I was devastated, but I knew we had to keep searching around for answers. My chiropractor told me that I could do stretches to help reduce pain but they would always be like this. I have orthodics, special exercises, but what I really want is just for them to be fixed. 1- They hurt awfully bad when I exercise or do sports, which sucks because I have a camp I’m supposed to be going to in one week, and don’t think I can. 2- They look hideous! I’m a teenager I want to wear skinny jeans, cute summer dresses, shorts, ect. I don’t want to be limited because of stupid knees that could have been corrected as a child. Is there ANY possible way or experts you know that could help me and others? With treatments or maybe even surgery?
    Thank you:)

    • amy September 15, 2012, 6:52 pm

      i have the same thing1 im not over weight either and i do irish dancing. but it looks like i wont be doing it for a few years untill my knees straighten them selves out! i was told by a doctor to buy insoles for my shoes to give me an upper step so my knees can go apart them selves!:)

  • Elsa August 12, 2012, 1:25 pm

    Hi. my name is Elsa I am 42 year old I have knock knees bad that only a surgery can fix , but you are still very young that your epephysis has not closed yet, tell your parents to take you with a really good orthopedic. There are special shoes that can fix your knees and also with a certain exescises. Tell your parents to look for a orthopedic in Mexico because honestly in this country the doctors do not know much about it. Thanks, God bless you

  • Jewels August 13, 2012, 12:21 am

    Elsa,
    Thank you very much;)! You were so kind to reply and give me more information that was very useful. I’ve sorta been starting to give up and think that this is who I am, it can’t change. But to know there’s still some hope is so great!:D thank you again and i hope your knees will find healing or comfort too. Have a wonderful day:)
    God bless you-

  • Charlotte September 7, 2012, 12:26 am

    Hi Yin,
    Thank you very much for sharing the article by Dr. Jolie. I am 24 and have knocked knees – I didn’t even know until a friend told me when I was 14, and no one thought to tell me it might cause knee problems in the future or that it was correctable! I now am having knee pain and shin splints when I run, and was looking for a solution when I found your site. I hope that it’s not too late for me to self-correct, because it’s really effecting my workouts!
    Thanks again!

    • Yin September 9, 2012, 10:09 pm

      Dear Charlotte, you are most welcomed. I came across her article and was inspired by her honest writing- her tips were very different from what other sites offer. I am glad it has benefited you.

  • william September 19, 2012, 7:46 am

    Hi I’m 22 and both my knees are curved in… I have knee pain alot and I am not over weight and am active.. what can I do?

  • char October 19, 2012, 4:07 am

    Hi, I’m Charlee. 27yr female and I have had knock knees my whole life. I been told I was, but never thought to look it up or inquire on it. I have terrible knee pain and am very unsteady on my feet. Especially going down stairs. I have always been embarrassed about my freakish knees. Never wear anything above mid calf. I finally thought I’d loom it up, found this page and now I’m happy to know there is something I can do about it. Thank you so much :) good luck to everyone else on their journey to be your own beautiful self.

  • marlene October 27, 2012, 8:16 am

    Hi Yin,
    I’m 26 and hv knocked knee since I was a kid I wanna
    Know if a surgery could correct it.I feel so embarrased and pple
    Even make fun of me pls I need help

  • marlene October 27, 2012, 9:37 am

    Hi Yin,
    I’m 26 and hv knocked knee since I was a kid I wanna
    Know if a surgery could correct it.I feel so embarrased and pple
    Even make fun of me pls I need help

  • Bicky Rymbai October 30, 2012, 2:12 pm

    HI, I am 24 years old I have knock knees plz kindly advice me how to do thank you

  • Mina October 31, 2012, 1:50 pm

    i have knoch knees and i hate them and the bit about running and stuff just scares me mostly because i love sport especially running. My knees are so annoying :((

  • David Rider December 22, 2012, 3:27 am

    Ive had knees that slant inward my whole life and ive been embarrased about the too. I just recently was running and there was so much pain on the outsides of my knees it was unbearable. im 14 and this has been happening my whole life. Help?

  • Rosie January 3, 2013, 8:22 am

    Hi I’m rosie and i’m from Argentina. I’m 21 and i have knocked knees too. I found out about a year ago. Nobody told me i had knocked knees before. My friends and family never noticed it until i told them and i used to wear shorts and dresses all the time. One day i was just trying some leggings and then i realized my legs looked weird. I took a picture of me and then i realized i had knocked knees and i felt horrible. I still wear shorts and dresses but not in public cause i feel so embarrased. My legs are too skinny so it is really noticeable.
    I dont want to have a surgery and I’m afraid its too late to correct them. I’ve been told that exercises can fix them, is that true?

  • Taylor March 30, 2013, 2:09 pm

    I think I have knocked knees because in ROTC there is a certain way we stand and I cannot put my heels togeather like I am supposed to and when I stand up straight my knees press togeather and it feels uncomfortable, I can wear skinny jeans but I have never been to a doctor. I am 15 and I was wondering if corrective surgey was needed and how to tell the severity of the case. please get back with me soon.