Knee pain is a major concern for many people, especially runners. Besides having been a runner for over 10 years, I competed in track & field in high school, martial arts, and weight training. To this day, I have been able to maintain flexibility in all of my joints and have over come several injuries from wrestling to snow boarding accidents.
The first step in avoiding Runner's Knee is to understand the different ways your knee can become injured, followed by the ways you can prevent Runner’s Knee. Injuries can always be reversed so we hope these tips will help.
Understanding How Runner’s Knee Can Develop
• Misaligned Knee Joint – The kneecap can slip out of position for various reasons, causing it to bear weight unevenly with each step. The more it continues to stay misaligned, the worse it can get.
• Knee Trauma – A strike to the knee, fall, or major twist at the joint can easily cause injury.
• Over Exertion – Constant use such as bending, over-stretching, or prolonged use during extreme sports activities can affect the nerves in the area.
• Weak Leg Muscles – Without strong muscles in your thighs and calves that can help during long runs, your joints will take a beating as they have to work harder.
• Flat Feet – Having flat fee, which is also known as fallen arches or overpronation causes the arches of your feet to level out, which stretches the muscles and tendons further than normal.
8 Simple Steps to Avoid Runner’s Knee
1. When running in nature, try flat grassy areas avoid uneven surfaces such as loose rocks or tree roots that you may slip or twist your ankle on
2. When running in the city, avoid running on concrete which is 10 times harder than asphalt.
3. Stretch 10 minutes before each run to loosen your leg and calf muscles
4. Start your run slow and make gradual increases instead of drastic speed changes
5. Wear knee supports while running for added support
6. Wear proper running shoes with insoles to keep your feet arched
7. Discard your shoes if they become worn or lose their sturdy shape
8. Take it easy and enjoy your run to avoid over exerting yourself
I hope these simple steps will help you to avoid serious long term injury. It's helped me and I'm sure it can help you too. Enjoy your run! - Joe Lam