Wall Sitting Success

Goodbye to Knee Pain

I taught Karen the Wall Sits exercise (see the post Heal Knee Pain.) Karen had been dealing with knee pain, and had some hip pain as well. I thought the wall sit would be a useful prescriptive exercise for her. By building the strength of her thighs while aligning her joints, the knee would be given a break from over-working. Knees need a vacation too, sometimes.

Karen practiced her Wall Sitting daily. When she came back for a session after three weeks, her knee pain was nearly gone. The pain had been with her for months before that, and often caused sudden, grimace-inducing shocks.

After Just Three Weeks of Practice

  • Her knee pain was gone
  • Her hip pain was gone
  • She was able to go deeper into the squats on the wall, which showed that her legs were getting stronger

Practice Every Day

Karen had been doing her Wall Sitting every morning. Her deal with herself was to do the Yoga Sun Salutation, and then the Wall Sitting, before she left her bedroom. Then she could go out to the kitchen and make coffee. A good idea, to reward herself this way. She wisely used this method to get her work in, everyday.

Refine your Technique and Deepen Your Practice

In our follow-up session together, I had her show me her wall squat technique. It is always beneficial to get refinement pointers. In the previous session, her form looked cramped and uncomfortable. Now, after three weeks of practice, she looked comfortable in the pose. She was much more aligned along the four vertical pairs of joints (ankles, knees, hips, shoulders) and more stable. I made some suggestions for refinement, but mostly I wanted to encourage her to continue.

I Gave Three Suggestions for Improving

  1. Some days Wall Sit for longer, up to a minute per rep, and go deeper. Other days, stay for just 30 seconds and don’t bend as deeply.
  2. Make sure the lower legs are lined up with the upper legs, directly below them. If the ankles splay out from the knees laterally it could, eventually, cause pain on the inside or outside of the knees.
  3. While it is important to relax the muscles and let the weight descend to the thighs; it is also important to keep the joints open. In Qigong terms, this is simultaneously letting the body sink to the earth and ascend to heaven. The muscles relax down into gravity while the joints expand and levitate upward.

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