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Many of my patients complain of pain in their knees when they stand up from a sitting position. It’s a COMMON COMPLAINT. It’s often one of the earliest signs of arthritis, and it’s certainly a reminder we’re getting old. When I was a young woman, I could go from lotus position, to a sprint, without thinking one iota about my knees. Now just to get up—after sitting through a rerun of Law & Order—is a stark reminder of my age.

Our aged knees would like nothing better than for us to get in the fetal position and stay there. 

If you were a caveman, and older than 25, you’d already have outlived your natural life expectancy. Now it’s by the grace of medicine, laws and seat belts. 

Tremendous pressure is placed on your knee when you go from sitting to standing, and when you do this against your worn out articular cartilages… Your knee is going to balk. When you sit for a while, as you relax into that position and its different relationship with gravity, your knee might start to shift a little. Mind you, it’s not coming out of place. It’s just trying to get comfortable. The surfaces of your knee might be seeking a position of lowest mechanical resistance. It’s a different position than when you were standing. Patients sometimes think there’s a cure for this specific symptom. There’s not, but you can make it better. 

Just bend and straighten your knees a couple of times before you stand up. 

Remind your knees you’re still alive and kicking. Then… simply stand up. You will notice a difference right away. It will eventually become your new habit, and your knees will thank you for it.

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Dr. Barbara Bergin is a board certified Orthopedic Surgeon who has been taking care of the bones and joints of Austin, Texas, for over 30 years. She prefers prevention to treatment and takes a natural approach to both when possible. By informing her readers and patients through 1010ParkPlace and her blog,, she wants to prevent 100,000 injuries before she retires.


  1. Just since you posted this blog YESTERDAY!! I’ve tried your suggestion and IT WORKS! I shouldn’t be amazed because it came from YOU, but it makes a big difference in how my right knee… the one with the problem… feels. Thank you, Dr. Barbra! xoxox, Brenda

    • So glad it helps. I do it all the time! Sometimes patients come see me specifically with that complaint! I don’t have to prescribe a pill. Of course, they probably go home and say to their spouse, “I can’t believe I had to pay her for that advice. She didn’t even give me a pill!”

  2. I was just on Katherines Corner and linking my blog and saw your link. I’ve had problems with my knees for a while now. The had a torn meniscus about 11 years ago and I had that taken care of. Up until recently, it was great. Now both my knees are bothering me. Yes, it hurts when I get up, but they both hurt going up and down stairs, more with going down. I will try your remedy because I do not want surgery or taking drugs either. Hopefully this will help to some degree at least. Thank you!

    • It will help! I’m sure of it. I won’t cure what ails you though. If you were over forty when you had that meniscus tear, then it was part of developing arthritis in your knee. If you are under 30, and tear your meniscus in a sports accident or something, then you’re going to get arthritis within about 10 years. We need those meniscus cartilages! Please don’t do squats, deep knee bends and lunges! Avoid high impact exercise. Sorry if you do all the above. It’s what the doctor ordered!

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