How Do You Use a Knee Pillow While Sleeping?

Words by Ron Rauwerda
January 9, 2019
Words by Ron Rauwerda
January 9, 2019

Regardless of what the cause of nocturnal back pain (or knee pain) is, a knee pillow offers the solution for you. Before you buy a leg pillow, it might be handy to know everything about it. That is why we have listed the most important information in this article.

What exactly is a knee pillow?

People who suffer from nocturnal back pain have probably used the concept of a knee pillow themselves every night. Placing a pillow or blanket between your legs while sleeping makes the lying posture better, which reduces stress on the body. However, this is not always efficient and the complaints often continue. Pillows are inconvenient and a blanket often too bulky. It is a good patch for the wound, but healing can not provide it.

It is precisely here that a knee pillow has been made. Thanks to the special design it can support the body optimally. This type of pillow is made of memory foam, which is extremely comfortable and supportive for the body. It molds itself to the contours of your body, making the fit for every person really perfect.

A knee cushion has two rounded notches where the legs go between. This ensures that the pillow stays securely while sleeping, even when you are turning in bed.

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How do you put a knee cushion?

The knee cushion should be between your knees or legs. In that position, it can carry the weight of your thigh. Your hip, your knees and even your ankles are relieved. In this way you can find a comfortable position, which does not cause any pain, and you get the sleep you need.

The leg cushion can also be used at the ankles to raise the leg slightly, reducing pressure on the foot.

To see how a knee cushion can be placed you can watch our video.

How soon after buying a leg cushion do I feel the effect?

This is a question that many people ask. An exact answer to this is difficult to give, because the cause and severity varies per person. From the experiences that we ourselves have had (and the research that has been done), it appears that almost everyone in the first week can already hear a significant difference. See what others are saying here. They usually sleep a lot better after a few days.

By using a knee pillow for a longer period of time, the pain can even completely disappear. We recommend avoiding the cause of the pain as much as possible, as this promotes the healing process. Did you tell? Then take more rest and try to sleep longer. Do you have a wrong working posture? Arrange a better office chair and watch your posture.

If you can watch this during the period that you use a knee pillow, the recovery will go extra fast.

How to sleep on your side properly

  • Put the knee pillow in between the knees
  • Adjust accordingly, so your hip and knee joints are supported
  • Fill the gap between your neck and the pillow using a hand towel
  • Fold the hand towel
  • Place it in line with your shoulder and the neck
  • Put the pillow on top of the towel afterward

By following these steps, you’re able to keep a more neutral spine, alleviating neck, back, and knee pain when sleeping. For visual learners, you can check out the video right here.

Factors to consider when choosing a knee pillow


If you’re heavier than the average person, consider purchasing a thick and strong knee pillow. Going for a softer knee pillow will not give you enough support, making little to no different than using an average pillow.

Pregnant women​

Expectant women need balance to keep the baby safe, that’s why a straight or an hourglass-shaped knee pillow is recommended. You can learn more about the benefits here.

Pillow Types

There is a variety of knee pillow material available in the market. The best one to look for is a memory foam knee pillow for quality and durability.

These pillows are dust-resistant, making clean-up easier. What’s more, they are hypoallergenic as well.


Our best selling cushion in some parts of Europe! This pillow keeps your legs in proper elevation the whole night, therefore, preventing any nerve strains and improper legs and spine alignment.

COMFYCENTRE® Knee Pillow With Strap​

This knee pillow with strap is ideal for side sleepers who move more often at night. The strap keeps the knee pillow in place and prevents the knees from continuously pressing together while sleeping.

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1. How thick should a knee pillow be?

A knee pillow's ideal thickness should be 4 to 6 inches to allow your legs to align. A thick cushion tends to spread the legs too much.

It is also essential to determine your body weight as a reference for the thickness of the knee pillow that suits you. Thicker knee pillows are preferable for heavier people, while thinner pillows are suitable for lighter people.

2. Can a knee pillow treat hip pain?

Placing a knee pillow between the knees and ankles during sleep promotes a more parallel position for the hips, reduces sleep-related injuries, and even makes you feel weightless. Knee pillow benefits are recognizable, especially if you're a side-sleeper, as elevating your legs offers quick relief while providing support.

3. How long do knee pillows last?

Knee pillows don't last forever, but a quality one should last between a year and 18 months. Try folding it in to see if it springs back into its original shape to see if you need to replace it already or not. Although despite its condition, replacing the knee pillow every 18 months is ideal for hygienic purposes.

4. How long does it take for memory foam (knee pillow) to stop smelling?

When buying a memory foam pillow like a knee pillow, customers usually complain about its smell. The unpleasant odor from the pillow is due to the materials used to make the pillow. The scent usually lasts up to four weeks.

You can try placing it in a well-ventilated room before use to help it air out.


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