The question is being asked more and more, as research shows that the number of people who use a machine to perform leg exercises has fallen by nearly half over the last decade.
It’s a good thing, according to Dr. John Bussaro, a physician and chair of the board of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, because it helps people avoid the pain of sitting on their knees.
“Leg exercises are a really effective way to prevent knee pain,” said Dr. Bussario, a professor of orthopedics at the University of California, Los Angeles.
“The whole purpose of the exercise is to get you in a position where your knees are aligned with your body.”
That alignment can be a challenge for people who sit in a chair, because the hips are in the way.
And there’s nothing that stops them from going into the chair, but a lot of them just can’t do it, he said.
But if you’re doing them on a treadmill, the alignment of the hips is perfect.
“If you’re in the chair for 20 minutes, you’ll have the exact same alignment,” Dr. Mihai Kratovil, director of the department of orthopaedics and sports medicine at University of Illinois at Chicago, said.
“It’s an incredible thing.
I can imagine many people saying, ‘I’m going to sit in the corner and try this out, but how is it going to help?'”
Dr. Bessaro said the exercise could be as simple as putting a small metal pole on your knee.
“You put a small pole on the knee and it’s just a small thing, but you can just go for a little bit, and you can actually do this for a long time,” he said, adding that he’d advise people to do it on their own, without a trainer.
“The whole idea is to do this without a therapist, without pain medication, without any sort of support,” Dr Kratol said.
“It’s really important to get it right, to just have a good balance between pain and good quality of life.”
Dr. Kratlovich, a frequent speaker on the topic of exercise and health, believes that leg exercise machines are a great solution.
“There’s a huge population of people, young people and older people, who don’t get adequate health care.
We’re doing a lot to help them,” she said.
The machines allow people to “get away from the physicality and go on the elliptical machine for a few minutes,” she added.
A lot of these machines are small, but that’s not always the case.
“One of the problems with sitting in the hospital for long periods of time, or even in the office, is that you get sore, and that can be really aggravating,” Dr Bussero said.
A little leg work can make a huge differenceThe machines are typically designed to mimic a chair or an exercise bike.
The pedals are typically small and flexible.
They don’t require any straps or a strap-like device, so there’s no need for a lot more padding.
“I think the main benefit is it’s easy to put it on and do it,” Dr Mihauly said.
He said he had one patient sit for two hours on a machine and the pain was minimal.
“If you can do the exercise without the need to use a trainer, you can sit for hours,” Dr Lechenier said.
For some people, the machines can be helpful.
“People get better in terms of the way they feel, and if you get a little stretch and a little tension,” Dr Gebbia said.
And they can also help with some hip pain.
But others, like Dr Muhanlovich and Dr Krakovec, have found that sitting on the machines for long stretches, while not hurting, can have a negative effect on their health.
“A lot can go wrong with your health over time, and the machines just aren’t good at doing that,” Dr Cernov said.