Preventing Runner’s Knee
You shouldn’t ignore any pain that seems unusual to your normal everyday fatigue, aches and pains of training. Over the next few weeks in our Enertor Health series, we will be looking at common injuries that we are susceptible to, what might cause them and our Enertor Experts fill us in on how you can prevent getting one of these injuries yourself. Today we’re taking a look at runner’s knee.
Runner’s knee, or Patellofemoral pain syndrome to give to call it by it’s proper medical term, was given it’s name because it is one of the most common injuries amongst runners. Sufferers of this injury will experience pain around the knee joint which can be mild at first but will gradually get worse during activity such as running, especially if on a decline.
The injury isn’t limited to runner’s – anyone that does any activity where you bend your knees a lot, such as cycling and walking, can experience this pain.
The term runner’s knee is really used to describe a collective of issues, but the pain experienced is normally down to wear and tear of cartilage or irritation of the tendons or soft tissues of the knee.
What causes runner’s knee?
There are a number of causes for this injury, and if you suspect you may have runner’s knee you should see a physiotherapist or doctor as soon as you can to diagnose where the problem lies for you. Causes can be muscular, such as weak quads as this can cause problems with keeping the knee joint in alignment, or tight hamstrings which will put pressure on the knees when in motion.
It could also be caused by the actual skeletal make up of the knee joint – the patella (your knee cap) may be uneven. If it’s your cartilage that is worn or irritated this reduces the shock absorption at the joint and will be causing the pain.
It may not even be your knee that is the problem, flat feet or pronated feet can cause unusual movement in the knee joint. If you’ve recently changed the way you are training this can also provoke an injury – if you’re not used to running on an incline and throw yourself into training up hill, the extra demand on your legs puts more stress on the knee joint. It could even be your trainers! If your foot is not supported in the right way for training needs, you’re going to end up putting added strain on your knees.
Preventing runner’s knee
Number one with preventing any injury is to always make sure you are warming up and stretching properly before and after any work out.
Make sure your form is good when running – or for any exercise. For running, don’t overstride, aim to strike mid-foot and run tall
Avoid abrupt changes to your training – any changes should be incremental to allow your body to adapt. So don’t go from running a 5k on Monday to running a marathon on Friday if you haven’t done it before – take your time and gradually add distance to your training.
Wear good trainers! Make sure they fit and support your foot properly and offer good shock absorption.
How can Enertor insoles help with runner’s knee?
Our 18 years of Orthotics experience, combine with D30 technology has enabled us to create a unique insole that can help. Our Performance insoles offer 44% shock absorption – more than any other insole out there – which reduces soft tissue irritation at the knee. And the patented design of our insoles offer natural heel lift which redistributes the pressure away from the tendons at the knee joint.
If you already have runner’s knee you should always seek medical advice before getting back to your training. But when you are ready, ease yourself back into your usual routine and perhaps consider adding some orthotics to your trainers to avoid injury again. Enertor insoles will lower any soft tissue irritations and the knee will remain settled and reduce the risk of the risk of pain reoccuring.
Enertor insoles are currently stocked in store at Superdrug, or you can purchase online HERE;
Whilst Enertor has over 18 years Orthotics experience, our blog content is provided for informational purposes only and it is not a substitute for your own doctor’s medical advice. Enertor advises anyone with an injury to seek their own medical advice – and do not make any health or medical related decisions based solely on information found on this site.