Top 5 Exercises for Pes Anserine Bursitis

Pes Anserinus Bursitis

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When you’re experiencing discomfort on the inside of your knee, the daily activities you once found enjoyable can suddenly become challenging. Perhaps you’ve been diagnosed with pes anserine bursitis, a condition where inflammation occurs in a bursa (a fluid-filled sac) nestled between your shinbone and three tendons of your hamstring muscle. If so, it’s normal to feel a mix of frustration and eagerness to seek relief.

You’re likely wondering, “How can I get back to my usual activities without this nagging pain?” Fortunately, there’s a way to help alleviate this discomfort and strengthen the surrounding area to deter future flare-ups. In this guide, we present six effective exercises designed to combat pes anserine bursitis, which you can perform conveniently at home.

Understanding Pes Anserine Bursitis

Pes anserine bursitis occurs when the knee’s small fluid-filled sac (bursa) becomes irritated and inflamed. This can cause pain, swelling, and tenderness on the inside of your knee, a few inches below the joint. Common causes of pes anserine bursitis include:

  • Overuse.
  • A direct blow to the knee.
  • Excessive friction from activities like running or walking.

Additionally, it can be related to other conditions like arthritis, obesity, or a lack of flexibility.

But there’s good news: you can manage and even alleviate these symptoms through regular and targeted exercises. These exercises aim to reduce inflammation, improve flexibility, and strengthen the surrounding muscles, providing much-needed support to the bursa and reducing the likelihood of future flare-ups.

The Best Exercises for Pes Anserine Bursitis

1. Butterfly Stretch

Coach Todd demonstrating the Butterfly Stretch, a beneficial exercise for managing Pes Anserine Bursitis, aimed at enhancing flexibility of the inner thigh muscles and promoting knee health
Butterfly Stretch Step 2
  • Begin on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the surface (you can lay on your bed, couch, or floor). The feet and knees should be together.
  • Slowly allow the knees to open apart from each other. Allow the thighs to move towards the floor as far as the hips allow.
  • Make sure to avoid arching in the low back.
  • Try to hold the stretch anywhere from 30-60 seconds.

2. Inner Hip Strengthener

Coach Todd performing the Inner Hip Strengthener, a valuable movement in the Pes Anserine Bursitis recovery regimen, focused on strengthening the muscles of the inner hip to provide support for the knee joint
  • While lying on your back, knees bent, and feet flat on the floor, place a ball or rolled towel between your legs. 
  • Gently squeeze the ball or towel for 5 seconds before relaxing.
  • Repeat for a total of 10 times.
  • Complete 2 sets of the exercise.

3. Seated Knee Extension

  • Sit in a chair about a foot away from a wall, with your knees at a 90-degree angle and your spine in a neutral position.
  • Press your toe into the wall to tense your thigh muscle.
  • Push with about 70-80% of your maximal exertion for 10 seconds.
  • Release the tension and rest for a few seconds.
  • Repeat this exercise for a total of 3 times per knee.
Seated Knee Extension

4. Standing Hip Lifts

Standing Hip Lifts step 1
Standing Hip Lifts 2
  • Stand tall with one hand placed on a bed or chair for support.
  • Balance on your left leg, keeping a slight bend in your knee to avoid locking it out.
  • Lead with your heel and lift your right leg out to the side, keeping your foot flexed.
  • Be sure not to lean to the left while lifting your leg.
  • Lower your leg back down to the starting position.
  • Repeat this movement 10 times on each leg.
  • Do a total of 3 sets of this exercise.

5. Standing Hip Extension

Standing Hip Extension step 1
Standing Hip Extension step 2
  • Stand tall with your hands placed on a steady surface, such as a counter, sink, or chair (without wheels), to hold onto for balance.
  • Shift your weight onto your left leg, keeping a slight bend in your left knee to avoid locking it out.
  • Keeping your toes pointed forward and your right leg straight, lift your right leg back a few inches.
  • Lower your leg back down to the starting position.
  • Repeat this movement for 10 repetitions on each leg.
  • Do a total of 3 sets of this exercise.


Pes anserine bursitis can be a bothersome condition, but with these targeted exercises, you’ll be well on your way to managing your symptoms and improving your overall knee health. Remember to perform these exercises regularly and maintain a consistent routine to experience the most benefit.

Let’s keep moving and make our knees happy again! Of course, it’s important to listen to your body and never push yourself to the point of pain. If you’re just starting out, it’s okay to take it slow. And as always, if your symptoms persist or worsen, it’s recommended to consult a healthcare professional.

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