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What Is Runner’s Knee and How Can It Be Avoided?

Person wearing a knee brace holding their knee

The Four Types

Anterior Knee Pain Syndrome

This pain is in the anterior and central part of the knee. It happens when the kneecap rubs against the lower part of the thigh bone. It can be caused by weak muscles, too much activity or by flat feet.

Iliotibial Band Syndrome

This is pain on the outside of the knee. The band goes from the outside of the hips to the thigh and down the top of the shinbone. When the band gets too tight, it can cause pain and swelling.

Chondromalacia Patella

This is the breakdown of cartilage on the back of the kneecap. You may feel pain or grinding when flexing the knee. It occurs when the knee and thigh bone rub against each other.

Patellofemoral Malalignment

This is when the knee diverges from where it is supposed to be. This of course results in pain, but also instability.

How to Avoid

Invest in Quality Shoes

No, we aren’t talking expensive high heels! You need to wear supportive shoes. It might be helpful to find out if you have pronation, over pronation or supination. This will determine what kind of support you need from your shoe. You can do this by making an appointment with us, or discover it for yourself at a local running shoe store.

Staying in Shape

Being overweight can be a significant attribution to runner’s knee. It causes more pressure on the joints and imbalance. This will not only improve other aspects of your health positively but help to prevent knee pain if done safely.

Warm Up Before Exercise

You wouldn’t bake cookies without preheating the oven. In the same way, you should get your whole body prepared before your workout. This includes stretching the leg muscles. Flexibility is key in preparing for exercise. You are gently telling your body what it can expect, so it doesn’t tense up.

Strength Training

There are many strength training moves your physical therapist at Core PT would be happy to go over with you. You want to strengthen the muscles around the knee. In addition, it is important to have a strong core and glute muscles to alleviate pressure on the knees.

If you’re experiencing runner’s knee, the experts at Core PT can help you hit the track again. We can create a series of exercises and stretches to address what’s causing your knee pain.

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