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5 Possible Causes of Knee Pain Associated With Running

by Amelia Grant about a month ago in health
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Running may be a great way to remain fit, become competitive, and simply escape the stress of everyday life, whether you're running up for your first 5k, preparing for your next half-marathon, or simply enjoying an accessible method to stay active. While running has a lot of health advantages for both your mind and body, it can also cause some unpleasant aches and pains. Knee discomfort is the most common complaint of runners.

5 Possible Causes of Knee Pain Associated With Running

Running may be a great way to remain fit, become competitive, and simply escape the stress of everyday life, whether you're running up for your first 5k, preparing for your next half-marathon, or simply enjoying an accessible method to stay active. While running has a lot of health advantages for both your mind and body, it can also cause some unpleasant aches and pains. Knee discomfort is the most common complaint of runners.

Running is a high-impact sport, which means that your joints must absorb and react to high levels of stress regularly. Because your knees take the majority of the impact, they're a joint that many runners have issues with at some time. The thing is, if you're having knee discomfort while running, you need to determine what's causing it so you can show your joints to the doctor and go back out to running comfortably for years to come.

1. Runner's knee

A runner's knee, also known as "patellofemoral pain syndrome," is caused by repeated movements, improper knee-cap alignment caused by weak and/or tight leg muscles, and poor running technique. While running, you'll feel knee pain under your knee cap or in the front of your knee if you have a runner's knee. When you're on hills or stairs, the discomfort usually gets worse.

Often, a runner's knee is a sign of overuse, therefore you'll need to rest it for at least two weeks. Once you've done that, return to the training by running on softer ground like grass or sand, and ice after each run. If the problem persists, you might wish to consult a physical therapist to treat any muscle imbalances.

To avoid the runner's knee, gradually and strategically increase your distance to reduce your chance of overuse damage. If you want to keep your muscles balanced, combine running with lots of cross-training, stretching, and resistance training.

2. Patellar tendinitis

Patellar tendinitis, sometimes known as "jumper's knee," is an overuse injury that is caused by the impact of jumping and similar activities. The patellar tendon, which links the kneecap to the shin bone, gets inflamed or ruptured in this case. Patellar tendonitis can also be exacerbated by running in worn-out shoes that no longer provide enough support.

Patellar tendinitis produces discomfort just below the knee cap, where the patellar tendon connects to the shin bone. People who have this problem may experience discomfort when they initially begin running, stand up from a seated position, or stretch. When dealing with a jumper's knee, the first step is to apply ice and rest. It's also a good idea to switch up your running shoes and wear a knee brace to help relieve some of the pressure on your patellar tendon.

It is recommended to replace your running shoes every 250 to 300 miles to avoid patellar tendinitis. Adding quad-strengthening activities to your training program will help preserve your patellar tendon from potential injury.

3. Arthritis

The articular cartilage (the smooth, glossy coating on the bones of our joints) wears away because of arthritis. Many people have joint pain as a consequence of years of wear and tear on their bodies or as a result of a severe injury. Arthritis can affect any portion of your knee, but the interior of the knee is usually affected.

Anti-inflammatory medications and steroid injections are commonly used to treat arthritic knees. When you have knee arthritis, it's critical to stay active. Swimming is an excellent method to stay active while reducing joint stress.

While there is no surefire way to avoid arthritis, reducing the stress placed on your knees is your best option. Maintaining a healthy weight is one of the best ways to achieve this, as being overweight puts additional strain on your knees every time you walk.

4. Poor form

If you have muscle imbalances in your running muscles (either strength imbalances or unequal degrees of tension), it can throw off your form and put more stress on your knees. Of course, the exact feel of these imbalances and how they affect your technique and knee health differs from runner to runner.

Because there are so many different forms of bad form, the knee discomfort induced by them is as diverse. It can cause pain in any part of the knee joint. It is most commonly felt on the inside of the knees or within the knee cap. If you want to run pain-free for the rest of your life, contact a physical therapist who specializes in runners. They'll examine your gait to figure out what's wrong and recommend some strengthening exercises to help you improve your form.

If you're new to running or want to increase your distance, consult a physical therapist or a running coach before you begin so they can assess your form and provide any essential instructions or corrective workout recommendations.

5. The wrong shoes

Though there is a lot of diversity here, knee discomfort caused by wearing improper shoes is frequently caused by a lack of arch support. In this instance, your feet tend to overpronate or fall inward, causing your knees to bend inward, placing additional stress on your knees, ankles, and hips.

You may need a new pair of running shoes if you get pain in any part of your knee. However, if you have overpronation as a result of wearing shoes that aren't supportive enough, you'll most likely have pain in the insides of your knees. Visit a running store or a podiatrist to get recommendations for running shoes that provide enough arch support. If you're truly having trouble, try getting custom orthotics, which will provide support just where you need it.

Finding the correct running shoes for your foot may sometimes take a lot of time. But spending time (and money) at a reputed running shoe store, on the other hand, can help you avoid troubles in the future.

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About the author

Amelia Grant

I am journalist, and blogger.

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