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Runner’s Knee

Runners Knee

Runners knee is a condition that is also known as ‘patellar femoral pain syndrome’ (PFPS). It is that annoying pain that you feel at the start of the run, during the run, and after the run in front, deep to, or beside the knee cap. Not only is the pain felt during training but also when sitting, squatting, or walking down stairs. The actual painful structure in this condition is a lining that surrounds the knee joint. This lining is called a ‘synovial membrane’. Synovial membranes surround the majority of the joints in our body. This membrane secretes fluid that helps lubricate the joints, supplying it with nutrients and allows the joints to move smoothly. Unfortunately when the synovial membrane is irritated it can secrete an excessive amount of fluid leading to swelling and pain. In PFPS there is abnormal tracking of the kneecap within its groove, which in turn irritates this lining. Runners and bikers are susceptible to this condition because of the constant repetitive motion patterns that are demanded for their respective sport. Unfortunately when we are constantly training, the weaker muscles in our body tend to be neglected and the stronger muscles tend to be overused. These compensation patterns will in turn lead to injuries anywhere along the weakest link  along the kinetic chain, ultimately leading to injuries such as runners knee, jumpers knee, shin splints, ITB syndrome, achilles tendinopaty etc.. Runners knee in particular is often associated with weak hip abductors (gluteus medius, gluteus minimus). Grooving efficient movement patterns can help prevent the development of this injury.   Exercises that address this type of weakness can help you prevent this condition.  A specific assessment of your running technique and hip strength can help you determine which exercises would benefit you most. Dr. Eric Nielsen Bkin, Doctor of Chiropractic ART, Medical Acupuncture, Graston Technique Provider Titleist Performance Institute – Certified Golf and Fitness Instructor drericnielsen@gmail.com

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