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Runner’s Knee Physical Therapy

How Does Physical Therapy Help Relieve Pain From Runners Knee

How We Treat Runner’s Knee | Physical Therapy

Because of the bodys kinetic chain, anything from foot, knee, hip and pelvic abnormalities can lead to runners knee. As a result, treatment areas can vary.

  • For the foot, flat foot or pronation can lead to stress at the knee. We work to strengthen the dynamic arch support of your foot. Plus, we want to strengthen the calf and musculature surrounding the foot. We work on increasing flexibility of the ankle/foot complex and provide advice on orthotics as well.
  • At the knee, we can provide taping to improve patella tracking in the femoral groove. We work to strengthen the quadriceps and hamstrings. Also we work to improve the eccentric loading tolerance to allow for return to running.
  • Just like the foot, the hip and pelvis can promote abnormal positioning at the knee and lead to pain. Weak gluteus muscles lead to internal rotation and valgus at the knee. This causes strain as well. We work on strengthening and landing mechanics to avoid any compensations throughout the lower extremity.

Additional treatments which complement your recovery can include taping, bracing, icing, and more. We individualize your total care plan.

The physical therapy regime would be to improve flexibility, strength, and stability of the knee joint. The therapy helps support the knee during vigorous activity such as running.

Can Runners Knee Cause Pain In The Back Of The Knee

When swelling causes the water ballooning effect inside the knee cavity/capsule youll develop a bulge in the space behind the knee. In turn, the pressure pushes on sensitive nerves and blood vessels which leads to pain in the area.

Why is it common in young female athletes?

There is typically an anatomical difference between the male and female gender.

Females tend to have a wider pelvis. Since the femur bone attaches to the lateral side of the pelvis, it increases the angle of the knee joint. The increased angle adds extra stress to the knees soft tissues and how the patella tracks in the femoral groove.

So, when a young female athlete overtrains while running, they are more likely to develop runners knee than the male athlete.

This place has improved my quality of life! I have recommended several people. The staff is great and treatment is superb! My husband is in therapy here now and he has also improved. Royce has been my go to therapist for years! One couldnt find anyone better. My husband himself has Aj and has had excellent care!Connie Harrison

Can you resolve runners knee without treatment?

It depends. If you continue to repeat the same patterns, your situation is likely to continue and worsen.

Treatment Of Runners Knee

When you suffer from runners knee, you should never ignore the problem. First, you can address it at home and use some techniques to alleviate the pain. However, the most important treatment you should use in order to address your pain is physical therapy, as only a professional therapist can address your problem correctly, after assessing and examining your particular case.

Follow this advice by physical therapists in Cary, NC, in order to alleviate your pain:

  • Rest and avoid bearing weight on the knee
  • Ice your knee for at least 20 minutes every 4 hours
  • Take an anti-inflammatory as specified by your doctor
  • Raise the knee by putting a pillow under it during rest
  • Get arch support for your shoes
  • See a physical therapist for strengthening exercises.

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Get A Free Phone Consult To See How We Can Help Your Knee Pain

Improve your footwear

Footwear is important to all physical activity. From walking to running to hiking, you need to have the right shoes for the activity. Make sure to get shoes that are appropriate. Foot and ankle stability can play an important role in knee pain and PFPS. For instance, those who over-pronate may began to experience knee pain with activity due to instability of the foot. Properly fitting footwear will help to give support and help to prevent or reduce pain in the knee.

Free Consultation At Our Clinic / Remotely

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Our well-equipped practice is conveniently located in Yorkdale Group Building, at 11685 Yonge Street, Unit A106 in Richmond Hill.

Experienced therapists and dedicated professionals to treat a wide range of acute and chronic pain conditions including Lower Back Pain, Neck and Shoulder Pain, Knee / Hip Pain, Sport / Fitness Injuries, Pelvic Floor, Motor Vehicle Accident therapy and rehabilitation, Sciatica, Arthritis, Fibromyalgia, Achilles Tendonitis, Plantar Fasciitis, Carpal Tunnel, Tennis Elbow, and Golfers Elbow.

We are well known for our custom programs for Motor Vehicle Accident Rehabilitation and WSIB Rehabilitation.

Our clinic is a multi-disciplinary health facility. Our dedicated and highly qualified team of health professionals include Physiotherapists, registered massage therapists, a certified acupuncture practitioner and chiropractor. We offer personalized and hands-on treatment to suit your specific condition.


Our experienced physiotherapists apply many different treatment options such as manual therapy techniques, exercise, taping, acupuncture, different modalities and education to help you recover from your injuries and maintain your optimal physical health.

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Soft Tissue Interventions: Should I Foam Roll My It Band

One of the most common questions I get in the clinic or from clients who are overcoming IT band pain: Should I foam roll my IT Band? Reference back to the top of the article to remind yourself what the anatomical and physiological properties are of the IT band, and that will help guide you towards this answer. As depicted at the beginning of the article, the IT band itself is a non-contractile tissue however, it has contractile muscular attachments to it which influences its tension! With that being said, it is ineffective to foam roll the IT band in isolation. To effectively enhance the mobility, blood flow, and extensibility of the IT band connective tissue, foam rolling the surrounding structures that attach to this tissue including the biceps femoris, vastus lateralis, TFL, and gluteus maximus is the answer!

Below is a video showing you how to perform this intervention effectively! One important aspect of this mode of treatment important to note is that the evidence for these interventions is moderate at best, and is NOT the solution to the issue. However, as previously noted, it can be a positive addition to overall treatment to assist in pain modulation, tissue extensibility, and exercise recovery.

NOTE: In addition to foam rolling, once your body has more tissue extensibility, mobility, and range of motion, it is important to perform contractile and specific movement related exercises to ensure that your body moves within this new range of motion!

Serving Clients From Richmond Hill Oak Ridges Aurora King City

A team of highly professional, experienced and dedicated rehabilitation practitioners.

Full resources and support in all modalities of therapy. We are your one stop shop.

A modern clinic fully loaded with state of the art equipment and pristine private treatment rooms for your added comfort.

Clients receive a customized and comprehensive plan to maximize their success rate for a full and pain free recovery.

Preventative and educational programs available for seniors and workplace needs.Our building is wheelchair accessible with free parking

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What Causes Runners Knee

According to research published by the BMJ, 50% of lower extremity running injuries occur around the knee. Given this, you can imagine just how much research and work have been done into developing treatments and remedies for the condition.

The underlying causes of runners knee are complex and can be due to a combination of factors. You may find that it is a weakness in your thigh muscles or other associated muscle groups that indirectly causes the pain.

You might also be experiencing iliotibial band syndrome, which causes pain on the outside of the knee. Or you could be suffering from a condition called chondromalacia patella, which affects the cartilage under your kneecap.

So What Can We Do About That Here Are Some Simple Exercises To Try

Why Your Knee Pain Might NOT Be a Knee Problem! (6 Examples)

1. Stretch

The IT band is a big fascia band that runs along the outside of your thigh, from your hip down to the side of your knee. It has a few fibers that attach over onto the patella and can pull your patella too far out to the side. While the actual fascia doesnt stretch too much, we can stretch all the muscles that attach to it which are the hamstrings, quadriceps and glutes. Try these stretches! In general, try to hold for 30 seconds and do each side twice.

2. Strengthen Your Glutes

Your glute muscles play a big role in keeping your knee steady. If your knee tends to turn in when you do things like run, jump, squat then this can also throw your patella off course. Try these glute exercises! As a general rule, do one side until you get a nice muscle burn and then switch sides. Do each side twice.

3. Strengthen Your Quads

Your quadriceps are 4 big muscles on the front of your thigh that join together to form a common tendon that runs on top of the patella and attaches at the bottom of your knee, on the tibia. Having strong quads plays a big role in helping absorb forces so the patellofemoral joint doesnt have to do it all. Here are some exercises to strengthen your quads. Again, go until fatigue and try to do each side twice.

4. Work on Your Technique

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Three Physical Therapy Techniques That Can Treat Runners Knee

Determining which physical therapy methods can best help your runners knee starts with a comprehensive evaluation. This will involve your physical therapist checking the function of your knee. They may also ask you questions about your level of pain and when the pain occurs. Also, they could ask you about your daily routine and medical history.

After gathering this information, your physical therapist can determine which therapy techniques are likely to benefit you. Some of the techniques they could choose to include in your plan are:

Therapeutic exercises

Your physical therapists can show you many therapeutic exercises that can help treat PPS. Often, these exercises will focus on strengthening the hip and knee muscles. One study reports that patients with PPS who did hip exercises had a 43% decrease in their pain scores after four weeks.

Active Release Techniques®

This therapy method is intended to stretch and mobilize the soft tissue that supports the knee. Active release movements are performed by your physical therapists hands. Medical researchers in one study reveal that ART helped improve sit-and-reach scores by almost 13 centimeters on average. This increase indicates a significant improvement in hamstring flexibility. In turn, this greater flexibility can help realign the knee joint.

Graston Technique®

Bracing For Runners Knee

Correcting the muscle imbalances in and around your knee will take some time. In addition, your bones may have a particular shape that will leave you predisposed to more episodes of patellofemoral syndrome. A knee brace can help ensure proper knee mechanics when running. A patellofemoral brace will often involve a buttress, or pad, that sits along the outside of your knee cap, which will help keep your kneecap centered in the groove. There are many braces available with varying degrees of quality and sizes. It is best to consult your physiotherapist before purchasing one.

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Taping For Runners Knee

The use of tape is a common treatment option for Runners knee. Two common types of tape that are used are KT tape and Leukotape. The primary goal of using tape is to pull the skin around your knee in a particular direction to encourage a positive change in your running mechanics. Before you purchase tape for your knee, it is highly recommended that you consult a physiotherapist to learn proper taping technique as there is a high degree of error when it is self-taught.

Physical Therapy In Cary Holly Springs Garner Raleigh And Morrisville

Pin by Kathryn Ofstad on S Runners Knee

For comprehensive pain and joint care in AC, you may get a referral to Raleigh Orthopaedic Therapy Services, or make an appointment on your own. The team of licensed physical therapists, licensed athletic trainers, and exercise physiologists provide world-class, cost-effective physical therapy services through our team of well-educated, experienced professionals, and support personnel.

For your convenience, physical therapy is offered at our eight clinic locations in the Triangle. To schedule a therapy appointment at one of our clinics or performance centers, please call 919-781-5600.

*Please note: Our new Cary office is opening February 4, 2019.

New address: 115 Kildaire Park Drive, Suite 102 Cary, NC 27518


The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

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Half Kneeling Quadriceps Stretch

Place a pad on the ground. Kneel on the pad with one knee and place the other foot flat on the ground with your knee bent in front of you. Wrap a band or strap around the foot that is behind you. Grab onto the strap with one hand behind your shoulder. Pull your foot up creating a stretch in your quad. Once you feel that stretch, lean forward for a few seconds and repeat.

What Is Runners Knee

Runners knee, or patellofemoral syndrome, is an injury that can cause a dull, achy pain at the front of the knee and around the kneecap. Its common for runners, cyclists, and for those who participate in sports involving jumping.

Runners knee symptoms may improve after resting from exercise and icing the area. At-home stretching and strengthening exercises may also help.

Read on to learn exercises and other home remedies you can try. If the pain doesnt go away after a few weeks of home treatment, or you experience sharp pain, see your doctor.

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Tips To Prevent Runners Knee

  • Reduce high impact activity by alternating with low impact activities such as yoga or swimming.
  • Gradually increase your mileage and intensity when you run. Dont go full-out and run 5 miles if youre not used to it.
  • Dont forget dynamic stretching and a warmup before exercising.
  • If you do static stretching , its best to do that after your workout, not before.
  • Make sure your athletic shoes fit and support you properly. Replace your running shoes every 300 to 500 miles.

How To Relieve Runners Knee The Common Advice From Physical Therapists

10 Best Knee Pain Exercises Ever Created (Stretches & Strengthening)

Most physical therapists will give you the same, standard advice, and recommend the same treatment in sports medicine. This advice generally follows these steps:

  • Rest. Avoid any weight-bearing activity on the knee:

Except for low-stress activities, weight-bearing activity should be minimized. Low-stress activities are showering, dressing, grooming, and light housework.

  • When resting your knee, raise it by placing a pillow underneath it:

One way to relieve this condition is to rest your knee by raising it on a pillow when youre resting, as this will reduce pressure on the joint.

  • Ice your knee for at least 20 minutes every four hours

Runners knee can be caused by repetitive motions, such as kneeling or squatting. To reduce the swelling and pain, doctors usually recommend applying ice on the affected knee.

  • Consult with your doctor, and take the anti-inflammatory medication that is prescribed to you

When pain medication is prescribed for short-term use, it is considered safe to take at the recommended dosage for up to 10 days. However, if you are required to take it on a long-term basis, the doctor will most likely prescribe a lower dose of pain medication to avoid dependency.

Finally, you may also be advised to wear a knee brace.

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Standing Hip Flexor Stretch

Areas worked: hip flexors, psoas

  • Start in a split stance, with the left foot forward and right leg back.
  • Drop your back knee and tailbone slightly so theyre an inch closer to the floor while you tuck your pelvis forward.
  • Keep your spine in a neutral position. Dont arch or round your back.
  • Hold for 10 seconds, then repeat on the other side.
  • Physical Therapy In Cary Nc For Treatment Of Runners Knee

    When you visit your PT in Cary, NC, because of your symptoms, he or she will take your medical history, and ask you to describe how your symptoms occurred, what symptoms you experienced first, and if they get worse with inactivity and better with activity.

    Your physical therapist will perform a thorough evaluation of your posture, and the range of motion of your spine, hips, and knees.

    Your physical therapist in Cary will then work with you to make sure that you keep your knees in their best flexibility, mobility, and muscle strength, in order to lead a productive, active life without limitations. We are here to help!

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    Is Exercise An Effective Treatment For Runners Knee

    In many cases, rehabilitation exercises and stretches may be effective for treating runners knee.

    According to research published in the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy, performing a series of knee- and hip-strengthening exercises three times a week for six weeks may be an effective way to decrease knee pain and improve physical activity.

    Additionally, a 2007 study found that using personalized physical therapy exercises to strengthen the quadriceps and increase flexibility was more effective than knee braces or taping the knee. And, in some cases, strengthening exercises may be more effective than taking NSAIDs.

    A physical therapist can help you determine which exercises will be most effective for you based on your situation. They can help you find exercises to target and stretch specific areas. Theyll also be able to observe if you have a muscular imbalance that needs to be corrected.


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