Runner’s Knee – An Overview
Do you experience knee pain often, while walking, running in the park, or even while you’re sitting in your office?
Well, if you do, then you must get your knee checked.
Knee pain is also known as runner’s knee occurs due to many reasons such as: over usage, a direct blow to the knee, or even irregular bone alignment. And, did you know, that by wearing the wrong shoes, or even opting for a strenuous exercise regimen can cause pain in our knees. But, this is nothing to worry about, because there are multiple treatments, and exercises that can help you get rid of your runner’s knee.
Let’s look into how you can get rid of the runner’s knee with a few exercises and treatments suggested by your Orthopaedic doctor.
What is Runner’s Knee?
Runner’s knee is a term used to describe pain felt in the knees. Runner’s knee can also be triggered if you have a history of previous knee problems.
Here are a few reasons why runner’s knee can develop over the years:
- Over usage of the knee
- Injury or a blow directly to the knee
- Irregular Bone Alignment
- Unbalanced or Weak thigh muscles
Treatments for Runner’s Knee
There are many treatments available for runner’s knee, recommended by Medical Professionals. Take a quick read and call your doctor right now in case you think you have a runner’s knee.
R.I.C.E (relaxation, icing, compression and elevation): Following this method can reduce the preliminary signs of runner’s knee. This particular protocol can turn out to be highly essential if you have just started experiencing mild knee pain.
Physical Therapy: This is the most common and most ideal of them all as physical therapy exercises will help you strengthen the muscles around your knee and the hip. Few of these exercises are suggested to release any tightness in your muscles and also to retrain your muscles to contract normally when you are performing any physical activity such as sports or exercise.
Shoe Inserts: We are sometimes unaware that wearing the wrong shoes can also cause tension and pain in our knees. Now there are many shoe inserts, which can help subdue the pain in your knees. Shoe inserts also help people with a unique foot structure to maintain a healthy posture and correct their movement patterns while they are running or walking.
Patellar Brace: Taping or using a patellar brace can help provide your knee with proper support to ensure you are not putting more stress just on your knees. This also helps you understand what posture is best for your knees, while you are walking, running or sitting.
It is always best to Consult a Medical Professional who can help you understand which solution would be beneficial for your runner’s knee. If these non-invasive methods seem to fail, then your doctor might suggest opting for a surgical procedure, which will definitely help treat your runner’s knee.
Exercises for Runner’s Knee
The most important thing you must know if you have a runner’s knee is; “Movement is medicine”. So here we shall look at some of the exercises that can help you reduce the pain and more importantly manage the pain.
There are a number of different reasons for knee pain and here are a few ways you can help release pent-up stress, tight muscles and strengthen your knee with these exercises. Seeking medical advice helps you avoid any unnecessary problems and additional pain to your knee. Your doctor would be a better judge at suggesting, which exercises would be suitable for your runner’s knee as they are aware of your medical history.
However, if you are suffering from knee pain, we would first advise you to Consult a Medical Professional, before you attempt any of these exercises.
1. Quad Stretches
Tightness in your quad muscles, which are located in the front of the thigh can cause an imbalance around the kneecap (patella), and also increase more pressure on the joint of the knee. Performing simple quad stretches while lying on your side can help reduce the tightness quickly.
- Start by laying on one side and then slightly bend your bottom leg and create a more stable base.
- Then, slowly reach back and grab your ankle of your leg which is resting on top, and slowly pull your foot towards your butt.
- Once you feel the stretch, keep your thighs parallel and hold this position for a span of 30 seconds 3x on each side.
2. Glute muscle activation
Your glutes are very important, as they not only work as hip extensors, but they also provide your hip support and stability it needs. Usually, if someone isn’t good at stabilising their hip, then the knee is usually the one which suffers.
- Start by laying on your back, then slowly position your heels close to your butt making your knees and your butt closer together.
- Using a resistance band around your knee while you exercise will help you strengthen and keep your knee in one position.
- Slowly push down from your heels, while clenching your butt and raise your hips into the bridge position.
- While you’re doing this, you will notice that your muscles around the sides and the back of your hips are getting worked out.
- Keep your knees apart and hold this position, while slowly counting to 5 and then repeat this 10 times, or 5 times according to your comfort levels.
3. Strengthening your quadriceps
This exercise will help you improvise the control in your kneecaps, strengthen your quad muscles and also improve your thigh muscle controls.
- Lie down on a flat surface while keeping your knee straight, and place a small towel underneath your ankle.
- Slowly press your ankle downwards into the towel, while tightening your quadriceps which are located on the top of your thigh.
- Hold your muscle tight for about 5 seconds and then slowly release it.
4. Straight leg raises
Straight leg raises help you strengthen your hips and your quadriceps while maintaining a pain-free and safe position for your knee. Leg raises release any additional stress around your kneecaps, work the muscles which support the leg and knee and reduce any strain present in your knees.
- Start by lying on your back, while one of your knees is kept straight, and the other knee is bent.
- Tighten your muscles on the top of your thigh of the leg which is kept straight, and then slowly lift your leg about 15 inches above the ground.
- Keep your leg straight and hold this position for a few seconds, and slowly lower your leg back to the ground. Repeat this leg raises for 10 – 15 repetitions.
5. The Clamshell exercise
This exercise is great for you to improve the mobility in your hip muscles, especially the gluteus medius (is one of the muscles which is located on the side of your hip). The gluteus medius is essential, as it provides support to your hips.
- Lie back on your side, while bending both your knees.
- Tighten your core muscles(abdomen), and slowly start lifting your knee up while keeping your feet together.
- Hold the knee up in this position for a few seconds, and then slowly lower your knee while relaxing your abdomen. Repeat this exercise for about 15 times to get the best results.
6. The Fire Hydrant
This exercise strengthens your hip and your kneecaps.
- Start by lying down on all your fours, while you support the weight of your body with your knees and hands keeping them on the floor.
- Lift your right knee slowly to the side, while keeping it flexed at a 90-degree angle.
- Slowly bring your knee back into its original position, and repeat the exercise about 15 times on both sides.
If you still experience pain while performing any of these exercises, we advise you to stop exercising immediately and consult your doctor. We have Multiple Treatments and exercises that our specialists can advise you to get rid of any Knee Pain and avoid any knee pains from recurring.
We hope you found these exercises to be helpful, only try and attempt these exercises if it doesn’t add more stress or pain to your knees. We hope you are able to strengthen, stretch and relax your knees with these exercises.
So, if you’ve been ignoring and Consult Our Specialists today. We would advise you to stop doing so immediately, as ignoring your knee pain will not help you solve the problem, and it can eventually turn into to something serious if it’s still ignored. Our Doctors would be glad to help you understand which treatment option would be suitable for your runner’s knee.
Also Know About : An Overview Of Knee Pain And Its Treatment