Knee pain can often be attributed to overly tight leg muscles caused by repetitive motion, such as running or biking. If you are having knee pain (that is not associated with an injury) consider stretching your quadriceps (muscles on the front of the thigh) and hip flexors to release tension from the knees. Try these simple yoga poses at home to lengthen and loosen your leg muscles.
Dancer's Pose - Stand on the right leg, bend the left leg at the knee, and grab the foot or ankle. Push the left foot into the hand to stretch the quad. To intensify the stretch raise the right arm overhead and begin to lean forward. Hold for three to six breaths. Repeat on the opposite side.
Hero's Pose - Begin kneeling. Keep the knees and thighs together, and widen the feet. Keep the feet straight with the tops of the feet pressing into the floor. Sit up tall on a yoga block or blanket at a height that feels comfortable for you. There should be a gentle stretch on the quads but no knee pain. Hold for three to six breaths. As the quads loosen, reduce the height of the block or blanket, or sit directly on the floor.
Tree II Pose - Pour the weight into the left leg. Bring the sole of the right foot up to the left ankle, calf, or thigh. Open the knee out to the right as far as comfortable to open the hips. Bring the hands up to heart center. Relax the shoulders down and back. Hold for three to six breaths. Repeat on the opposite side.
Low Lunge - Place the right foot forward, lower the left knee to the ground, and lean into the right leg while pushing the tailbone down and forward to lengthen the left hip flexor. To intensify the stretch grab the left ankle in the left hand and extend the right arm forward. Hold for three to six breaths. Repeat on the opposite side.