Health & Fitness

What Causes Knock Knees & How to Fix It

Knock knees, or genu valgum as it is sometimes called is something that a lot of children will experience before their adolescent years.

In fact, many children between the ages of 2 to 7 will have knock knees or bowlegs as a natural part of their bone growth development.

What is Knock Knees

Knocked knees is a knee alignment problem where the knees tend to curve inward, and the ankles stay separated.

Knock Knees (Genu Valgum)

As you can imagine, if your knees are constantly rubbing against one another it can cause a lot of discomfort and even pain.

How Do You Diagnose Knock Knees

Genu valgum is usually diagnosed by measuring the angle of the shin bone to the thigh bone.

The diagnosing doctor may also request that you stand up straight to assess the distance between your ankles.

The doctor may also require an X-ray examination to determine the severity and cause of your knock knee deformity.

My Knock Knee Fix reports that the type of doctor responsible for assessing knock knees and determining the cause and severity is an orthopedist.

Most orthopedic doctors have years of experience dealing with lower leg extremities like knock knees.

This is the type of doctor you would need to see in order to determine the exact cause of your knock knees in adulthood and what you can begin doing to straighten your legs.

Common Causes of Knock Knees

There are a number of different things that can cause your knock knees.

Some of the most common causes of knock knees in adults include.


Obesity doesn’t directly cause knock knees but it can definitely have a major indirect impact on how bad your knees bend inward.

The reason obesity can be considered a cause of knock knees is because it puts a lot of excessive pressure on your knees that makes genu valgum worse.


Arthritis, specifically knee arthritis, is a major cause of knock knees in adults.

As the arthritis eats away at the joints in the knees it quickly leads to joint deformity such as knocked knees or bowlegs.

The main 2 forms of arthritis that can cause an incorrect alignment around the knee are rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.

Renal Failure

Renal failure is a disease that affects the kidneys, and it causes knock knees because the stops the kidneys from maintaining a good level of calcium.


Any type of injury to the leg bones or knees can cause knock knees in adulthood.

When the injury takes place and isn’t treated properly it causes the development of the bones and joints in your knees to begin tilting inward as a result.

These are the main causes of knock knees in adults.

The best treatment for knock knees will greatly depend on the underlying cause.

This is why it’s important to make an appointment with a good orthopedic doctor to help you determine the exact cause of your knock knee condition.

Once you know the exact cause of your knock knees you can begin treating it.

How to Fix Knock Knees in Adults

When it comes to treatment for knock knees there are a number of different options available to you.

Knock Knee Braces

The first option often recommended for knock knees treatment are braces.

These knee braces work by attaching to your leg and helping to reposition the knees gradually.

The downside to bracing is the fact that you have to wear the brace all day long under your clothes.

For some people this can be too much as it makes your clothes look bulky, and the idea of wearing the brace all day isn’t something some people want to do.

Knock Knees Exercises

There are several exercises that can actually help correct your knock knees over time.

One of the best exercises to fix knock knees are lunges.

Lunges help with knock knee correction because it strengthens and loosens muslces in your hip abductors which could be causing your knees to turn inward.

To do lunges properly follow the steps below.

  1. Stand up in a straight position with your feet shoulder width apart.
  2. Now take one step forward with your right foot while your left foot remains in the original position.
  3. Bend your right knee in front of you to a 90 degree angle while your left leg behind stays as straight as possible.
  4. Once you achieve the 90 degree angle with your right leg in front of you hold this stretch for a few seconds before returning to the starting position.

Repeat the steps above about 10 reps and then switch to bending your left leg in front of you in a 90 degree angle.

To get the best results with this or any other exercise to correct knock knees you have to stay consistent with it day in and day out.

Don’t expect to do these exercises like lunges and see your knock knees begin to straighten within a week or two.

It may take at least a couple months before you begin seeing your knock knees realigning into a straighter position from exercising the right muscles daily.

Knock Knee Surgery

If all else fails, knock knee surgery such as osteotomy is your best bet to get rid of genu valgum permanently.

However, this surgical procedure does come with some side effects and risks, and on top of all that the price for this type of surgery may be out of your budget.

In osteotomy the surgeon will cut and remove a piece of the bone from your tibia or femur and then realign the leg.

The success rate of this surgery is pretty good, but check to see if your insurance covers this type of surgery to avoid paying the high costs of this type of treatment.


Now that you know what causes knock knees in adults and a few ways how to treat it, you should visit your doctor today and see what’s the best option for you to realign your legs into a straighter position.

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About the author

Vidya Menon

Vidya is an online content developer for Justwebworld. She has a BA in English Language and Literature and an MA in Current Linguistics. She is a passionate reader, writer and researcher with a background in academic writing.