Most of the normal activities we do around the house can be considered exercise, especially if we repeat the activity or movement many times in a row. Maintaining or even improving the ability to perform our daily activities is essential for quality of life. This is the first in a series of simple exercises that can performed at home (or anywhere).

Standing up and sitting down is an activity most of us perform upwards of 200 times a day. Our ability to get from one place to another would be severely compromised if we had great difficulty with or were unable to stand up/sit down. The muscles used when standing up/sitting down are the same muscles used when performing a chair squat.

To perform a chair squat properly, stand in front of a chair with your feet shoulder width apart and toes turned slightly out. Slowly lower your body until your hips touch the chair, then return to standing position. Only use your hands for assistance if necessary for balance.

Start with 10 repetitions and gradually add reps as long as you do not have pain. Try to build up to 50 repetitions. Do not perform this exercise if it causes pain. Consult with your medical doctor or physical therapist if you have persistent knee pain.