Running injuries are common due to the high-impact stressors on your muscles in joints. A common condition that we see here at OSR in Kailua is runners knee. Runners’ knee happens when there are irritations where the kneecap rests on the thighbone. Much like “tennis elbow” the pain can come in waves, be sharp or dull and may go away on its own. While some people may have ongoing knee issues, the reason for runner’s knee usually must do with the strength of the surrounding muscles in the quadriceps and the hamstrings.
Runner’s knee is found more often in younger recreational runners and is twice as likely to be found in women over men based on a study by the British Journal of Sports Medicine. The symptoms of runner’s knee include pain towards the back of the knee, tenderness behind or around the patella, feeling like the knee is giving out, and pain when walking up hills, steps or on uneven ground.
Our physical therapy team works with patients every day that are suffering from knee pain or recovering from knee surgeries. Our medical staff here at OSR agrees with our PT’s that the best thing you can do to AVOID runners knee and to help it heal is to strengthen the muscles around the knee. Runner’s knee is common in people who start running long distances without building up to it, or people who have been sedentary for long periods of time and then start running extensively.
To avoid getting runner’s knee:
- Strengthen Your Hamstrings and Quads
- Do wall sits, hamstring stretches, calf stretches, lateral movement stretches
- Don’t Over-Exert Your Joints on a run
- Work up to long runs, don’t go too far too soon
- Wear the proper running shoes
- If you feel pain while running, lessen the knee’s workload
- Get your gait assessed at OSR prior to any marathon training
- Avoid downward slopes while running
If you are suffering from Runner’s knee, first, try R.I.C.E.: Rest, ice, compress, and elevate! If this is an ongoing issue, talk to your PCP and call Oahu Spine & Rehab to set up a complimentary consultation. Our integrated health center will help you source your pain and give you the best treatment plan to correct it. Give us a call today at 488-5555 to make an appointment!