Your running days aren’t over
Do you get runners knee? This could be knee pain while running or even after.
If you’ve even thought of uttering the words “…my running days are over”, I’ve got good news for you.
If I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard this, I’d be a rich man. It’s for this reason, I wan’t to talk about Runners Knee.
Your running day’s may not be over. Don’t let knee pain be the thing that holds you back. Not in any way am I suggesting someone push through pain to keep running.
If it’s arthritis, then yes, it’s probably time to say goodbye. Maybe cycling or kettlebell training instead.
The most common areas to experience knee pain are:
– Outside of the knee along the ITB
– Bottom of the knee cap
– Behind the back of the knee where calf & hamstring insert.
If you get knee pain after running, or it’s something that builds up in the latter distances of a run, it’s likely a biomechanical issue. Muscle imbalance and incorrect movement patterns (running gait) which causing the knees to take the brunt of the load.
The good news is, when there’s an imbalance, there is always a solution. Restoring balance by strengthening what’s weak, releasing what’s tight and cleaning up movement will often result in relieving runners knee.
Determine imbalances or biomechanical issues.
You should know if you have flat feet. Has a health pro or shoe pro ever told you? Otherwise, simply take a look down at your feet right now. Do you have a healthy arch, or does your foot flatten into the floor?
Look in the mirror or ask a friend. Does your lower back have an excessive arch (and/or) do you have slumped shoulders? You know the ones – typical of our tech savvy society.
Can you balance on 1 leg? Try for 30 seconds. Which leg is better or worse? Either way, there could be a discrepancy. Ideally balance is pretty even on both sides. You spend 100 percent of your time on a single leg while running. If struggling to balance while standing, the same thing is happening while running.
A sexy swagger
What mean by this is when the butt swings left ad right with every step. Not saying it’s a bad thing… It’s just not great for running. When the hips go and round ’n’ round, it could very well be contributing to runners knee. It may suggest a weak core, a weak glute or 2, tight hip flexors and hamstrings, or all of the above.
Notice in the above points, there was no mention of the knees. The knees just get sandwiched in between the true culprits. When people tell me about their frustrations with runners knees, I’m often not surprised to find some of the issues outlined above.
If you recognize any of these imbalances, start working to correct them sooner than later. Some basic strength exercises and foam roller work can make a very quick difference.
Catch up with a physio or good personal trainer for a biomechanical assessment. The’ll no doubt show you exercises to restore imbalances so you can potentially re-live your love for running.
I’ll be back real soon with a comprehensive post on corrective exercises too.
‘till next time
Like an Oak, we grow slowly but surely
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