Knee Pain With Running
For many people running is more than a hobby, it is a passion. A way to destress and enjoy the outdoors at the same time. Knee pain can really put a kink in your running plans and if left unchecked can lead to months off. While we naturally think of resting as our first option there are other things we can do to speed healing and ensure we come back strong enough to not end up injured again.
Step 1 - Active Rest
When you are having knee pain the first thing we want to do is unload the knee to allow healing to start to occur. With that being said this does not mean you should sit on the couch. This should be a time of active rest meaning that you try low impact activity to keep your aerobic base and promote blood flow (which aids with healing). Some examples include swimming, aqua jogging, biking, and kayaking to name a few.
Step 2 - Mobility
You want to make sure that you have the necessary mobility to decrease stress on your joints. You can perform a Thomas Test to see if you need to stretch out the quads or hip flexors. If you are positive on this test you can find a great stretch here.
Step 3 - Strengthening
Although many runners hate the idea of doing strength work this is guaranteed to help you feel better without making you bulky, tight, or slow. In fact, these will help you run more efficiently without pain. The first item is our ultimate hip series. The hip controls all the motion that occurs down the leg and making sure you have the strength and endurance to control that for your whole run is VERY important. Check out the ultimate hip strengthening here.
The single leg step up is also a good way to learn good landing mechanics and alignment while running. Check out how to do it here.
Step 4 - Progressive Reload
Now as you start to feel better it is important that you take time to ramp up to avoid anding up with knee pain again due to ramping up too fast. For every week that you took for recovery you should take a week to reload. That means working at 60-70% of the running volume you were previously using.
If this does not work you may want to consider talking to a professional such as us or your doctor for more directed care. Feel free to book a consultation here to learn more.