Bending your foot at the knee seems obvious. But to what degree can you bend it? Again, can you straighten your leg without any difficulties? You can get answers to such questions if you how to measure knee flexion at home.
Knee flexion is typically the degree to which you can bend your knee. If you the limit at which your knee can flex, then you can assess the range of motion. This is helpful, especially if you are recovering from surgery or an injury.
A full range of motion at the knee is significant, as it makes movement easier. Bending and straightening at the knee makes it possible to run, wall, support weight of the body, to control body balance as well as to absorb shock.
Sometimes it is quite challenging to extend the knee fully. Such as state is called a flexion deformity of the knee. Simply put, it is the inability to straighten the knee fully and is also commonly called as flexion contractual.
The standard motion range (AROM) of a knee is 0° extension and 140° flexion. In the case of deformities, then the normal active range of motion is reduced. And, this occurs when knee flexors fail to lengthen as you extend your leg. Such is common in people who have insufficient physical therapy. A deformity can be temporary or permanent. Nonetheless, with adequate rehabilitation, i.e., getting active and passive mobilization at the affected joint can return the full motion range.
Measuring the knee flexion at home is easy. You can use a goniometer or a phone app that simulates a goniometer. But also you can use your fingers and a measuring tape, to estimate your knee flexion.
Three motion ranges exist:
The knee usually bends and straightens. But it also rotates to some extent. Doctors use three range motions:
The right tool to use is the goniometer; it is typically a special type of protractor that can accurately measure angles at the joints. However, you can get your knee flexion without a goniometer.
The goniometer has a circle representing 360 degrees and two extending arms. One arm is movable while the other is stationary. To get an accurate range of motion, identify the following 3 points:
This process is quite challenging, and you may need additional hands to help you.
There is a range of values that are termed normal. For instance, the American Medical Association defines normal knee flexion range to stand at 150 degrees. The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, on the other hand, states it as 141 degrees ±5.3 degrees.
Understanding movements at a joint can help your deal with injuries as well as the health of your joint. It is easy to learn. The above tips are straightforward. Additionally, you can try using the app, which is free and easy to use too.