Did you know that up to 42% of running injuries are knee-related?
As track events started this week in the Olympic games, many of us may feel more motivated to head outdoors and go for a run. While running offers a range of benefits such as improved cardio fitness, stronger muscles, improved sleep and weight loss, it can also put a lot of pressure on your knees.
The knees are one of the most important joints in the body as they absorb most of the impact when you walk, move, or run. According to Sports Medicine Australia, up to 70% of recreational and competitive runners sustain overuse injuries throughout a 12-month period, with 42% of those injuries knee-related often being runner’s knee.
Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome also known as Runner’s Knee is when the kneecap rubs against the thighbone whilst you move. At first, the pain may be slight, however then your knee starts to become stiffer and give way every now and there. The pain and stiffness surrounding runners’ knees are often dull however can gradually increase and if left untreated, can cause significant damage to your kneecap joints.
The repetitive impact of running, lack of foot support and overuse of activity or duration are all contributing factors of Runner’s Knee. As we see more people running to get their daily dose of exercise, we may see an increase in knee pain. With that said, here are some ways to protect those shock absorbers while you run!
A short five-minute warm up followed by some stretching of the muscles can greatly reduce the risk of injury and pain to the knee. Focus on stretching the quadriceps, hamstrings and calves as allowing these muscles to warm up before running will greatly reduce the stress on the knee.
It’s always better to prevent a knee injury from the outside in, that’s why your shoe choice is important. When it comes to footwear, there are endless choices to pick from that’s why we recommended that you invest in good quality shoes that are specifically designed to suit your foot shape and size. Don’t rely on a softly cushioned shoe to absorb most of the shock as these shoes can exacerbate the knee. A quality shoe that fits properly and is comfortable will be the best choice for you while running.
Often while running, runners overstride and straighten their knees as they land, creating an incredible amount of impact to the knees. By keeping your knees bent, this will allow you to land softly and reduce the shock impact to the knees.
Activating your core muscles can significantly improve your form and posture when running. Keeping your core tight will prevent you from leaning too far forwards or backwards which will ultimately put less pressure on those shock absorbers.
An assessment and treatment from the team at Progressive Sport and Spinal Physiotherapy could help you delay or avoid surgery. If you are starting to experience muscle aches or pain, don’t wait! Contact the practice today on (02)47217798, email email@example.com or book your appointment online here.