Knee pain….runners beware

Knee pain is probably the most common injury complaint amongst runners. This isn’t surprising as forces of up to 550% of body weight pass through the joint when running!

Common Running Knee Injuries

 IT Band Syndrome 

The IT band is a thick band of fascia which runs down the outside of the thigh and this can rub over the bony part on the outer knee and  this friction can cause pain and inflammation.

 Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome 

Is a condition caused by mal-tracking of the knee cap. The maltracking usually results in the knee cap moving too far laterally, causing pain and potential damage to the cartilage. Pain when running downhill or after running are very common symptoms of this injury.

 Popliteus Injury 

The Popliteus is a muscle at the back of the knee joint which is important in straightening the knee. This muscle can become overworked in runners, especially when the hamstring muscles are also tight.

 Jumper’s Knee 

Jumper’s knee is more correctly known as Patella Tendinopathy (or tendonitis). It is a condition causing pain and inflammation of the patella tendon which attaches the knee cap to the shin bone.

 Hamstring Tendinopathy 

The hamstring tendons at the back of the knee can become inflamed due to overuse, especially when lots of acceleration or deceleration is involved. Sprint training and intervals may contribute to this injury.

Poor training techniques are the most easily corrected errors. The common pitfalls to watch out for include:

  • Training too much too soon for beginners (maximum increase of 10% a week).
  • A sudden increase in training distance or intensity in experienced runners.
  • Introduction of new elements such as hill or sprint sessions.
  • Running on cambered roads (where one foot is lower than the other).
  • Lack of flexibility work or focus on training one muscle group only (i.e. quads over hamstrings).

This is general advice only. If you have any pain see you doctor or contact us.

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