Runners Knee Treatment
What is Runner’s Knee?
The dreaded “Runner’s Knee” or Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (PFPS) has stopped runners from the weekend warrior up to the international athlete from performing at their best.
Runner’s knee got its nickname for an obvious reason – it affects an awful lot of runners, usually because the stress caused by running causes discomfort where the patella (kneecap) sits on the femur.
The resultant knee pain can range from sudden sharp stabbing pains, to dull persistent aches. Often the pain will disappear when the runner is running and will reappear afterwards or after periods of rest.
What causes Runner’s Knee?
There are many causes of this very common cause of knee pain.
There could be biomechanical issues with the patella – it may not sit properly in the femoral groove, which is often associated with muscle weakness.
It could be caused by ageing cartilages and overuse of an ageing body. Repeated running on hard surfaces can cause wear and tear of the joints resulting in pain.
The feet do play a large role in the alignment of the kneecap and quite often excessively pronated or “flat feet” cause the shin to rotate, thus the kneecap becomes poorly aligned.
Running shoes can also help or hinder runner’s knee and you should never run in shoes that have done more than 1000km of running. Click to watch a video on how to choose running shoes.
Treatment of Runner’s Knee
Prevention is always the best form of treatment so before you start running, you should have you gait, foot movements, postural alignment and footwear assessed. Additionally, it is always best to run on natural surfaces and gradually increase your efforts by no more than 10% per week.
However, once you’ve started to suffer from persistent runner’s knee issues, it’s imperative that you seek the advice and assistance of an experienced health professional.
Should you choose to see or be referred to a sports podiatrist in Sydney, the team at Orthotic Solutions Podiatry will analyse your running style, focussing on your foot mechanics to determine if they are a factor in your painful runner’s knee.
Should your foot mechanics be a factor, we can outline the best treatment plan, but would usually incorporate improved footwear selection, muscle retraining and the possibility of custom made orthotics, or even just pre-made orthotics.
If custom made orthotics are required, our custom sports orthotics have a 4 year structural guarantee and all review consultations and adjustments are free for 12 whole months after fitting. Click to watch videos on sports orthotics or for tips to help choose running shoes.