How do you guys save your knees?

For you folks that stand all day every day, how do you keep your knees from going to shit? I’m in my mid-20s, and my knees hurt so badly after even an hour of standing that I’m considering going to the doctor. What, if anything, he’ll suggest, I don’t know. I’m starting to dread my long days, and I’m starting to get pissed off at people more easily because I’m in pain.

This is not cool, and it’s only come about recently thanks to working 6 on and 1 off.

When I had time to work out regularly, this wasn’t a problem. I just don’t have the time to work out at all right now — and yes, it’s not simply a matter of “making time” — the time does not exist during the day for me to do this.

16 thoughts on “How do you guys save your knees?

  1. See if you can get your pharmacy a very nice (read: expensive) work mat to walk on that is about 3 feet by the length of your counter.

    We just got one for my pharmacy that we were able to order through our store’s ordering system that is 3×15 feet. It has saved my feet, knees and back a lot of pain since we got it. I’ve even been getting better sleep because of less back pain. The only problem is that it’s a couple of inches thick, so our tall pharmacist has to bend down a little more to check prescriptions, but we short people are making her deal with it. :)

    -Andrew, CPhT
    http://www.blogpharm.com – Get your own pharmacy blog.
    http://www.pharmcountry.net – read my pharmacy blog.

  2. Just a nurse here, but I save my knees by wearing good shoes (I have four pairs of Dansko’s), alternating shoes, and I walk around a lot so my joints stay lubricated, this also increases venous return and saves you from other problems. moving your legs in place would work too.

  3. Don’t say “just” as it relates to who you are and what you do…

    Come to think of it, I have been standing still more than usual. (Data entry for the win…) A dearth of good help means I stand in one place a lot. I’ll have to work on that.

  4. Those mats are cute, but I’d need 4-5 of them in 3 different stores.

    I’m going to try some different shoes today, and see about not standing in one place for hours on end, too…

  5. I work at Wearwell® and a friend forwarded this thread to me when she saw someone suggested one of our mats on this site.

    We actually have several mats that work extremely well for pharmacies. We sell a lot of them and people love them. I’ll paste the links below.

    Here’s the thing–good shoes and moving around will help, but studies prove that anti-fatigue mats make a big difference in worker comfort. Like other ergonomic products, they also help in preventing musculoskeletal disorders. I think you’ll find that buying a good anti-fatigue mat will greatly improve your situation.

    UltraSoft Tile-Top AM – 100% Antimicrobial http://www.wearwell.com/index.html/screen/product_page/display_id/id46e5646466a947.36484980/category_id/1243

    The Autoclavable Mat
    http://www.wearwell.com/index.html/screen/product_page/display_id/id45b8fa503fe726.54503185/category_id/858

  6. Rigid orthotics. Changed. My. Life.

    Try a pair of cheap ones like Spenco 3/4 length from the sporting goods store. If those help a lot (ie, total pain relief) stick with them. If they help a little, get custom ones like Superfeet made. There’s no need to get full custom from a podiatrist – major ripoff unless you have congenital deformities.

    See a sports medicine physician or a PM&R doc rather than an orthopedist. They can get you on a stretching program that will do wonders, too.

    My knee pain was so bad that I was taking stairs old-man style – both feet on every step – and that was with 200mg Celebrex bid. Now, I haven’t taken so much as a Tylenol for my knees in years.

    E

  7. I had the same thing when I was in my mid-twenties. I switched to a better shoe, which has saved my feet (see my blog’s Christmas list) but the knee pain remained.

    Ended up going to my orthopaedist. MRI revealed a torn PCL in the knee that had the most pain. The lack of ligament support combined with standing with my knee hyper-extended (which I found i was doing all the time) caused tremendous pain. I guess I tore the PCL while playing basketball and volleyball in college, it just didn’t present itself for a few years.

    Pharmacy God

  8. I fell one morning and broke my hip. After coming home I worked hard at the physical therapy but my knees were killing me for some reason. So that I could stay on my feet and keep walking I got knee braces (from Walmart!) and they made a huge difference. Also, since I don’t like how even NSAIDs make me feel, I used the heating pad and ice packs on my knees and that hip for pain just before I went to bed. THAT made a huge difference, also.

    I love your blog. The pharmacists I’ve ever talked to were the most helpful people ever!

  9. I asked a coworker who’s been in the business for 36+ years.

    He whole heartily recommended Merrell shoes. And let me tell you, they are a life/knee/insurance premium saver. World of difference – I’ve recommended them to several others, including nurses, docs and security guards and they love them.

    Find them at your local dept store, or if you have a nordstrom’s rack/filene’s, you’ll find them at a slight discount there

  10. Anti fatigue matting is definitely the solution to the problem of sore knees. If you get the matting with the ultra soft top it will also increase the circulation in the lower legs – helping to prevent DVT’s.
    Do not pick a cheaper inferior product – make sure it has the beveled edges all the way around so you do not trip on the edge. Especially on the thicker ones.
    Some mats have a wierd powder on the bottom that make them slip around – make sure you avoid them too.
    We carry the anti-fatigue matting that you need

    http://www.medicus-health.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID=102

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