Strengthen Your Knees To Avoid Or Lessen Pain
If youre experiencing pain behind your knees while running, it doesnt mean youre destined to stop exercising. There are many simple things you can do every day to reduce or completely avoid the pain. Here are six strategies to start with:
Knee pain can be an uncomfortable and disheartening effect of an exercise routine. However, working with a certified health coach or your physician can help you identify the source of pain before it becomes a bigger issue and take the right steps to ease or avoid the pain in the future.
Medial Collateral Ligament Injury
The medial collateral ligament runs along the outside of your inner knee to stabilize the joint. If the ligament overstretches, you may have an MCL sprain.
The MCL can also tear partially or fully. An MCL injury most commonly occurs after force is applied to the outer knee, such as in contact sports.
Symptoms of an MCL injury include:
Inner Knee Pain: Running & Plica Syndrome
Plica syndrome is much harder to diagnose than the aforementioned conditions. The quick definition of plica syndrome is that this refers to irritation of the lining of the knee joint that often results in running knee problems. Plica refers to thin remnants from the fetal stages of ones early developments that are located in the sleeves of the synovial folds more specifically, these appear as an extension of the synovial capsule.
When the synovial capsule is irritated from activities such as running, plica thicken, making it more likely to get caught on the femur or pinched between the femur and the patella. This typically causes medial knee pain with running, along with a catching, locking or a crackling sensation/sound of the knee.
Overuse, as well as tight hamstrings and/or weak quadriceps muscles, can increase ones likelihood of developing plica syndrome.
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Common Running Injuries: Knee Pain
The knees experience pressure equal to approximately 3 times the body’s weight when walking and approximately 5 times the body’s weight when running. In other words, a person who weighs 150lbs puts about 750lbs of pressure on the knee when landing each running stride.
Not surprisingly, the knee is the most frequently injured joint in runners and non-runners alike.
Runner’s knee: patellofemoral pain syndromeWhen people say they have “runner’s knee,” they are typically referring to patellofemoral pain syndrome. “Patella” means kneecap and “femur” means thighbone, so patellofemoral pain is pain that originates between the kneecap and thighbone. The pain is felt at the front of the knee, either under or around the edges of the kneecap.
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The root of patellofemoral pain can vary and may be difficult to identify. For example, the kneecap may not glide well along the groove in the femur , or relatively weak hip muscles may cause a runner to over-rely on quadriceps muscles, which then tug uncomfortably on the kneecap.
Patellofemoral pain is typically more noticeable going up stairs or walking or jogging uphill.
Iliotibial band syndromeIliotibial band syndrome can affect both novice and experienced runners. The pain tends to be sharp and isolated to the area just above or at the knobby outside of the knee. IT band syndrome does not cause redness, swelling, or knee instability.
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What Should I Do About Runner’s Knee
To help knee pain at home, Andy recommends applying ice to the knee and stretching.
Hold ice on the painful area for around 20 minutes a few times a day. Never put ice directly on your skin.
To stretch the area, Andy recommends lying on your side with your bad leg on top.
Bend your top leg so your foot goes back towards your bottom, then hold it there with your hand and keep both knees touching.
Hold the stretch for at least 45 seconds, breathing deeply and feeling the stretch in the thigh. Repeat this around 6 times a day.
If the pain’s severe or the knee’s swollen, see a GP straight away.
If your knee pain is not severe, stop running and get it checked by a GP or physiotherapist if the pain does not go away after a week.
They can also recommend stretches or exercises to help you recover.
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How Is Runners Knee Treated
Your healthcare provider will figure out the best treatment based on:
How old you are
Your overall health and health history
How much pain you have
How well you can handle specific medicines, procedures, or therapies
How long the condition is expected to last
Your opinion or preference
The best course of treatment for runner’s knee is to stop running until you can run again without pain. Other treatment may include:
What Causes Pfp Syndrome
Patellofemoral pain syndrome is an overuse disorder. These happen when someone does the same movements that stress the knee over and over again.
In PFP syndrome, repeated bending and straightening the knee stresses the kneecap. It’s most common in athletes.
Some people with PFP syndrome have a kneecap that is out of line with the thighbone . The kneecap can get out of line, or wiggle as it moves along the thighbone, because of muscle weakness, trauma, or another problem. If this happens, the kneecap doesn’t glide smoothly over the thighbone when the knee bends and straightens. The kneecap gets injured and this causes the pain of PFP syndrome.
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When To Call A Doctor
There are a few times when you should consider calling your physician for your inner knee pain. These instances may include:
- Inner knee pain due to trauma
- Pain that lasts more than a few weeks
- Pain that significantly limits your ability to move around
- Pain that is accompanied by feelings of being unwell, such as fever, malaise, or unexplained weight loss.
Most episodes of inner knee pain get better within of few weeks of onset or after starting conservative treatments. Pain that persists should be checked by your physician so the appropriate medical treatment can be started.
Knee Pain After Running
Whether youre a long-time runner or just starting out, having sore muscles after a run is normal. But if you are experiencing knee pain after running, something more serious could be wrong. Board certified orthopedic surgeon Dr. Zach Logan explains common reasons your knee may hurt after running on Livestrong.com.
Runners knee, or patellofemoral syndrome is one of the most common types of knee pain among runners. The pain is located nearly always in the center of the front of the knee, says Dr. Logan. This pain can be a result of the knee cap not tracking properly over the thigh bone or from not getting enough rest between runs. If the muscles around the kneecap are weak or tight, this can also cause runners knee.
Tight hamstrings and calf muscles both cross the knee joint in the back. Runners are pretty notorious for having tight hamstrings, so focusing on flexibility can help with knee pain, Dr. Logan says.
Pain below the kneecap is likely due to repetitive stress on your knee from running. Over time, that stress could result in patellar tendonitis. Physiologically, this is the inflammatory cells in your body becoming overactive in a certain area. Dr. Logan explains.
Maintaining strength of the muscles in the front in the thigh is another easy way to help keep the knees functioning well, he adds.
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What Are Other Knee Injuries Runners Have
Athletes can also have injuries to the anterior cruciate ligament , posterior cruciate ligament , collateral ligament, meniscus, cartilage and tendons. While these aren’t as common in runners, they’re still serious and require medical attention.
Knee injuries range from minor to serious, so it’s important to take a break from running and see your healthcare provider if pain persists.
Inside Knee Pain After Running
What do we mean when we refer to the “inside” or “inner” knee? Good question. There are a few different parts of your knee that can be injured or irritated from exercise, particularly running.
The inside knee is the relatively small area on the inside of the leg closest to your other knee. So for your left knee, this area would be to the right of the kneecap.
Others runners that have experienced this pain refer to it as a “twinge”, “nagging pain”, or “ongoing soreness” rather than a sharp or shooting pain. But everyone experiences muscle and joint pain differently. If any of these terms accurately describe how the inside of your knee feels, keep reading.
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Ways On Preventing Knee Pain After Running
While there are many benefits to running, the reality is that every stride taken puts some type of stress on your knees. It is common to experience some knee pain after running, but if that pain continues for long periods of time, particularly after you have done basic treatment , then it may be time to seek professional assistance.
Runners knee is a term frequently used as a blanket expression to describe multiple disorders or injuries. Whether you run for exercise or choose to compete, understanding the types of disorders or injuries that cause knee pain after running is a good idea.
What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Pfp Syndrome
Patellofemoral pain syndrome causes pain under and around the knee. The pain often gets worse with walking, kneeling, squatting, going up or down stairs, or running. It may also hurt after sitting with a bent knee for a long time, such as in a long car ride or in a movie theater.
Some people with PFP syndrome feel a “popping” or creaking after getting up from sitting or when going up or down stairs.
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What Is Jumper’s Knee
Jumper’s knee also called patellar tendonitis is an overuse injury that occurs when a tendon is overloaded, causing it to thicken. I see this most often in younger patients who complain about pain in the front of the knee.
It can be especially painful when you squat, jump or land. Jumper’s knee typically begins in adolescence or early adulthood.
When Does Knee Pain Become Serious
To tell normal pain from more serious signs of injury, look out for sharp pains inside the knee or along the joint lines. Also pay attention to how the knee looks and feels any external swelling or locking when you move the knee is a sign of more serious injury, especially if it persists after three days of rest.
You can continue working out with knee pain, but Dr. Miller stresses paying attention to how youre feeling and not pushing your body when hurting. If the pain gets any worse, or persists after two weeks, stop running and consult help.
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How Can I Prevent Runner’s Knee
- Keep your thigh muscles strong and limber with regular exercise.
- Use shoe inserts if you have problems that may lead to runner’s knee.
- Make sure your shoes have enough support.
- Try not to run on hard surfaces, like concrete.
- Stay in shape and keep a healthy weight.
- Warm up before you work out.
- Donât make sudden workout changes like adding squats or lunges. Add intense moves slowly.
- Ask your doctor if you should see a physical therapist.
- If your doctor or physical therapist suggests it. Try a knee brace when you work out.
- Wear quality running shoes.
- Get a new pair of running shoes once yours lose their shape or the sole becomes worn or irregular.
Diagnosis Of Inner Knee Pain
Your doctor will examine your knee and take a history, asking about:
- the type of pain you have, when it started and whether it comes and goes
- how active you are
- any activity, accident or injury that could have caused it
If you have cartilage or ligament damage, your doctor may suggest a procedure to look inside your knee, called an arthroscopy . This involves making a small cut in your knee and inserting a thin tube with a camera on the end. As well as diagnosing the problem, the procedure can also be used to repair or remove damaged tissue.
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Side Knee Pain: It Band Syndrome
If you feel a sharp, stabbing pain on the outside of your knee, you may be dealing with iliotibial band syndrome , a very common injury among runners. The iliotibial band is a band of tissue that runs along the outside of the thigh, from the tensor fasciae latae where it attaches at the top of the hip to the outside of the knee. It helps to stabilize the knee and hip when you run.
Why Is Medial Knee Pain So Common
It is very common to get pain on the medial side of the knee, because muscle weakness and/or tightness, which is very common, can subtly change the way the knee moves.
This causes more force to go through the inner side of the joint, rather than distributing weight evenly through the whole joint, which results in damage to the inner side of the knee and therefore results in medial knee pain. For example, it is much more common to get osteoarthritis on the inner side of the knee than the outer side.
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The above medical conditions cover most of the reasons for your knee pain when running. That said, if you suspect that your running knee pain is caused by something else, then be sure to see a certified physician for a thorough assessment.
In the meantime, thank for you reading my post.
Run strong and stay safe.
Understanding Pain Behind The Knee
More often than not, pain behind the knee is diagnosed as patellofemoral pain syndrome . Patello is the patella, so the kneecap. Femoral refers to the femur, which is the thighbone and pain and syndrome is PFPS, patella femoral pain syndrome. It usually happens to runners and cyclists and hikers.
However, people who sit for most of the day in sedentary jobs or sedentary lifestyles, it can also happen to them. There are a couple of muscles involved with this. The quadriceps muscle is the big muscle at the front of the thigh. The calves are the sizable muscles behind the shin, and the hamstrings are the muscles behind the thigh.
So these control the joints of the lower body.
PFPS can be caused by overuse , biomechanical abnormalities or muscle dysfunction .
PFPS typically feels like mild or severe discomfort that radiates from the back of the knee cap touching the thigh bone.
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What Should I Do About Achilles Pain When I Run
To treat achilles pain at home, Andy recommends applying ice to the area if you can feel a lump there . You can also gently massage the area with your fingers.
You could also try using heel wedges in your shoes. Get advice about this from a sports or running shop.
See a GP or a physiotherapist if you have achilles pain that does not disappear after 3 to 4 weeks.
If you have a sudden, sharp pain, your achilles tendon may have torn. See a GP straight away if this is the case.
Some Basics About Both Injuries To Keep In Mind
Beware of chronicity! Although humans are born to run,6 and most cases are easy to recover from,7 these injuries do have a nasty way of dragging on and on in some unlucky runners please be aware of that risk.8 These conditions definitely do not have any guaranteed cures.
There are also many myths about both conditions that need busting, like the one about IT band stretching, the dubious importance of kneecap tracking, or the exaggerated dangers of running on pavement .
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Treatment For Inside Knee Pain
Once your doctor determines the cause of the pain inside knee, he or she will be able to suggest forms of treatment.
Treatment varies depending on the severity of the injury. Immediate treatment after traumatic injuries include RICE and anti-inflammatory over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen or aspirin.
If a more serious injury such as an MCL tear is present, then arthroscopic surgery to repair the torn ligament may be necessary. In all cases, physical therapy may be beneficial, because strengthening the muscles around knee will help reduce pain inside the knee both before and after surgery . Speak with your doctor about all of your options in regards to your inside knee pain.