Written by 1:18 pm Lifestyle Changes, Low-impact sports

Knee Pain-friendly Fun: the Top Low-impact Sports for Everyone


Are you looking for fun sports that protect your knees? Maybe you have a knee injury or condition. Low-impact activities reduce the force when your feet hit the ground. This is great for those with weak knees or recovering from an injury. It also improves flexibility.

Knee pain can be caused by various things, like strenuous exercise, joint diseases, or sports injuries. It is important to talk to a physiotherapist to get advice about what type of exercise is right for you.


Swimming is a great sport for those with knee pain. It’s low-impact and non-weight bearing. This means it exercises both the muscles and joints, but gently. It can also help improve flexibility, coordination and balance.

Let’s look closer at why it’s so beneficial:

Benefits of Swimming

Swimming is great! It’s low-impact, so no joint pain. Plus, it gives you freedom from higher-impact sports. And, it’s easy on your heart and joints. You get aerobic and cardiovascular benefits without any strain. Plus, it builds muscle strength and improves flexibility.

It also has meditative effects – deep breathing and body movement. Swimming boosts mental energy and helps reduce pain. It’s the perfect exercise for when knee pain restricts you from running or jumping jacks.

Tips for Swimming with Knee Pain

Swimming can be an ideal way to exercise, even if you have knee pain. It’s low-impact and helps build strength. Plus, the water’s buoyancy reduces strain on joints and muscles. If you have knee pain, use these tips for a more comfortable swim experience.

  1. Start slowly: Begin with familiar strokes, like breaststroke or freestyle. Modify your kick to reduce impact on your knees.
  2. Use flotation devices: Try aqua jogger belts or foam noodles around your waist. This takes pressure off your knees.
  3. Avoid deep diving: Don’t dive in deep ends. Use shallow ends to control depth when swimming.
  4. Warm up: Stretch and do an easy lap first. This warms up your body.
  5. Utilize pull buoys: Put them between your legs while swimming. They increase body control and provide extra buoyancy.


Cycling is fab for exercise and is low-impact. People with knee pain can enjoy it too! There are many kinds – from mountain to road biking. Plus, there are all sorts of cycles to pick from.

Let’s explore the benefits of cycling and how it can help with knee pain:

Benefits of Cycling

Cycling has lots of advantages! It’s a great and cheap way to get physical activity. No matter how old you are, or how fit you are, it can help your heart, burn calories and improve your leptin levels.

If you have knee pain from arthritis or an injury, it’s perfect. Cycling puts minimal stress on your legs like running does, but without the same level of effort. Plus, it helps with recovery and strengthens the muscles around your knee and hip.

You can cycle no matter what your fitness level or budget is. Electric bikes can help with difficult terrain and long distances. You can get a stationary bike with a monitor if you want to stay at home. Or join a gym class with bikes connected to an external network to track your data.

It’s up to you how hard you cycle – it could be a leisurely ride in the park on a Sunday, or training five days a week on a race course. The best part is that you get all the benefits, without any extra strain due to its low-impact nature!

Tips for Cycling with Knee Pain

If you suffer from knee pain and have doc’s okay to cycle, here are some tips to help:

  • Start by warming up with gentle stretching of hamstrings and quads.
  • Use good form when cycling, seat height should be such that knee is slightly bent at bottom stroke.
  • Keep shoulders relaxed and back upright to reduce burden on knees.
  • Consider switching to pedals with clips on both sides for support and stability when pedaling.
  • Adding a spacer under one cleat may also help prevent strain and keep balance during hard efforts – this can help reduce stress on vulnerable joints like the knee.


Yoga: a low-impact sport with awesome benefits! No matter your fitness level, yoga can help. It combines stretching, strengthening and relaxation. This can boost your mobility, balance, flexibility and reduce stress and joint pain.

Especially if you suffer from knee pain – yoga is great!

Benefits of Yoga

Yoga is a great choice for fitness newcomers and pros. It’s low impact, and offers many physical, mental, and emotional benefits.

  • Physically, it can improve flexibility, strength, and balance. It also boosts circulation and energy levels!
  • Mentally, it can reduce stress with breathing techniques and help manage depression or anxiety through mindfulness.
  • Plus, it strengthens skills such as self-discipline and resilience. It can even cultivate self-compassion and connection with yourself and others.

So, if you’re looking for wellbeing, yoga is the way to go!

Tips for Practicing Yoga with Knee Pain

Yoga can be a great low-impact sport for people with knee pain. Practiced mindfully and with skill, it can help strengthen the muscles around the joint and improve balance and coordination.

Here are some tips for getting the most out of your practice:

  • Avoid kneeling or direct pressure poses, e.g., Hero Pose (Virasana).
  • Take it slowly and focus on form.
  • Opt for seated or reclining poses.
  • Incorporate props like straps, blocks, and blankets.
  • Strengthen lower body muscles. eg., Chair Pose (Utkatasana).
  • Focus on strengthening core muscles (e.g., Plank).
  • Tune in to the body; stay within a safe range of motion to avoid injury.

By being mindful, you can benefit from yoga without aggravating any conditions.

Rock Climbing

Rock climbing can liven up your life with fun and adventure! No extra gear needed—just access to a climbing wall. Plus, it doesn’t put too much stress on the knees. This is great news for people with knee pain.

So, what are the key advantages of rock climbing? Let’s find out!

Benefits of Rock Climbing

Rock climbing is an incredible way to stay active. It builds physical strength and provides mental health benefits. It can help with grip, flexibility, endurance and balance. It’s also great for self-confidence and feeling accomplished.

Upper body strength comes from gripping the holds. Rock climbing shoes give extra grip. Muscles in the arms, shoulders and back need to stay engaged with each climb.

It’s safe, but beginners should use knee pads and other protective clothing. Knot tying and harness safety is also important.

Indoor walls or outdoor cliff faces can be tackled. Enjoy the thrill of moving up holds and the calming effect of outdoor rock sports! Rock climbing takes physical acumen to new heights.

Tips for Rock Climbing with Knee Pain

Rock climbing can lead to knee pain. Sudden movements and hard landings can worsen joint symptoms. To make the experience more comfortable, use padded knee guards and support belts. Invest in good approach shoes and climbing shoes that fit well. Before climbing, warm up and focus on stretching the lower body.

Avoid scissoring legs and take smaller steps when landing. Stay hydrated and keep fluids in check. This will reduce shock on the knees and provide internal lubrication for smoother movement. Take care to not overstress yourself. With these tips, you can have a pleasant and safe rock climbing journey!


Whatever your age or fitness level, there are low-impact sports that can help ease knee pain. Swimming, cycling and walking can all help increase flexibility and build up muscle around the knee joint. Martial arts like Tai Chi, yoga and Pilates can also improve balance, strength and reduce inflammation in the knee.

No need to suffer from painful knees! Select an enjoyable activity that focuses on strengthening muscles whilst keeping impact low. With a healthy diet, rest and physical activity tailored to you, severe knee pain can be avoided whilst having fun!

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What are some low-impact sports for someone who suffers from knee pain?

A: Some great low-impact sports for someone who suffers from knee pain are swimming, yoga, Pilates, tai chi, cycling, hiking, rowing, and elliptical training.

Q: What muscles do low-impact sports target?

A: Low-impact sports target the muscles of the core, arms, legs, and back. They also help to improve balance and flexibility.

Q: Do low-impact sports help with knee pain?

A: Yes, low-impact sports help to strengthen the muscles supporting the knee joint, which can help to reduce pain and improve stability.