Cross training for Runner's Knee (PFPS)

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4.6out of 5
Worsened(1)
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  • Anonymous Runner's Knee (PFPS)

    • Age 35-54
    • Female
    • 230 lbs
    • 5' 7"
    • Phoenix Arizona
    24
    Nov2016
    • Injury Status Recovering
    • Physical activity per week 0-4 hours
    • Chronicity 4 - 6 Months
    • Repeat injury? No
    • Pain with prolonged sitting Standing
    • Doctor/Care Giver Fierro

    Treatment Ratings

      Not Improved
      NSAIDs - Anti Inflammatory drugs, Cross training, Strengthening Exercises, Stretching, Supportive Shoes, Brace, Rest, Massage, Platelet Rich Plasma Injection, Ice, Physical Therapy, Supplements
      Worsened
      Other

    Is just little reliefs


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  • tawandacat Runner's Knee (PFPS)

    • Age 55+
    • Female
    • 145 lbs
    • 5' 7"
    • Binalong Bay, Tasmania
    22
    Sep2016
    • Injury Status Cured
    • Physical activity per week 8+ hours
    • Chronicity 2 - 3 Months
    • Repeat injury? No

    Treatment Ratings

      Cured
      Barefoot Shoes, Proper Running Form
      Improved
      NSAIDs - Anti Inflammatory drugs, Ice, Strengthening Exercises, Cross training
      Not Improved
      Orthotics
      Worsened
      Supportive Shoes

    I had been running for years in really cushioned shoes (Asics Nimbus) When I was in my 30's I developed a sharp pain in my heels. I fixed this problem with orthotics as it was a quick fix to my problem. I ran with these orthotics in very cushioned shoes for 20 years. Then in my mid 50's I developed runners knee. I couldn't run anymore it hurt too much. So I started bike riding. I found that if I pointed my feet outwards (externally rotating the leg) when I peddled, it didn't hurt my knees. I took this concept back to my running. I read the book "Born to Run" By Christopher McDougall. I discovered that really padded running shoes gives the body a false sense of protection. When the brain doesn't perceive danger it does nothing to protect itself from repetitive actions like running with the knees misaligned as in my case, despite the orthotics. I switched to a mid barefoot shoe and got rid of the orthotics. I found the idea of using my feet and having a better connection to the ground profoundly interesting and helpful. I became very interested in posture and mechanical alignment of the body and how it correlates and affects performance. After reading the book "8 Steps to a Pain-Free Back" by Esther Gokhale. I signed up for the Gokhale Method Foundations Course. This is where I learned to walk a line with my inner heels on that line. This was the deal breaker for me. I found that this movement along with using my feet properly and engaging my glutes externally rotated the leg and aligned my ankles, knees and hips. I am now 58 years old and I am happily running again without any knee issues. Today, I just came back from a barefoot run along the beach. I haven't had knee problems for 2+ years now.


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  • 03
    Dec2015
    • Injury Status Cured

    Treatment Ratings

      Cured
      NSAIDs - Anti Inflammatory drugs, Ice, Rest, Supportive Shoes, Stretching, Strengthening Exercises, Cross training, Proper Running Form

    All there's no magic "cure" for injury prone knees. There are a host of things you can do to make life easier.
    Wear the correct shoes, you already have orthotics which is a great start.
    Have your gait analyzed, again you know you pronate so you can make a conscious effort to adjust your run and gear.
    Don't just run. You could have some sort of strength/flexibility imbalance in your feet, ankles, calves, thighs, back etc. Swim, stretch, cycle, do some yoga, pilates. Becoming a good all round athlete promotes healthier running.
    Don't run hurt. If your knees are crying in agony, don't "man up" and smash them into the concrete. Running is about making small incremental improvements, no one gets to long mileage without building up properly (or if they do, it's a recipe for injury).
    Establish a recovery routine. Ice, compression, elevation, ibuprofen. Even if you're not injured, these can help with post-run fatigue/aches and mean you can do more with quicker recovery between runs.
    Run short, run fast. Not everyone is made to plod 23 miles. Try short speed work, intervals, aim for 20 min 5ks, 6 min miles, there are plenty of challenging short distance goals which will challenge your running. What separates beginners to advanced runners is not their mileage but their abilities at the preferred distance. I have no knee pain since.


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  • 03
    Dec2015
    • Injury Status Cured

    Treatment Ratings

      Cured
      Cross training
      Improved
      Physical Therapy, Stretching, Foam Rolling

    I had runner's knee for 2 years. I thought it was never going away. I tried everything from foam roller, stretching, going to PT.
    What worked in the end was cross training. I needed to strengthen my quads. Biking, hiking, swimming, climbing stairs did the trick. I could not only run everyday without switching it up.


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  • 03
    Dec2015
    • Injury Status Recovering

    Treatment Ratings

      Almost Cured
      Physical Therapy, Rest, Supportive Shoes, Strengthening Exercises, Cross training, Foam Rolling

    in my case -
    got MRI diagnosis was ligaments pulling kneecap up too far toward the quad
    did a bunch of physical therapy got a lot better after a few months, but honestly don't run as much since
    if you want to stay healthy running:
    get right shoes, replace them often if you have opportunities to run miles on something that's not pavement, take them. also cross train with e.g. biking, swimming, other low-impact
    stretch well (in my case, especially quads. also hamstring, calves, hip flexors - Google those running stretches). flexibility improves your form and posture and distributes strain. Yoga seems great but can't say I've ever managed to get into it. foam roll that quad and ligament
    LIGHT squats, lunges, reverse lunges, side lunges, agility drills vary the training, include hills, interval training
    truth is, some people are sound and run into old age, quite a lot of us are not and something gives out, knees are a prime candidate. in my case, adding 10-20 lbs didn't help ease the strain on joints. like a car, change the oil, take care of yourself and hope for the best. This has been the best for me and so far I'm good.


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  • 21
    Aug2015
    • Injury Status Recovering

    Treatment Ratings

      Improved
      Ice, Strengthening Exercises, Cross training, Foam Rolling

    I think this is it for my knee pain as well. There's a time when I push hard enough (running/back squatting) where my knee starts to ache the next couple of days. It become worse when I sit and layoff of it. Then my CrossFit coach (pretty sure CF added to the reason I have these knee probs) said after a while of resting your quads get weaker and other muscles are compensating for it leading to knee aching. He suggested to ice my and compress my knee so any swelling goes down then slowly do quad exercises to help strengthen them till the aching passes.
    This seems to be my solution that works for me. Recently I've been hitting some gains in the gym on my squat and do some all out sprints for cardio. After one sprint session I felt that pain in my right knee and was like "not again". Next day it became painful to break parallel on a squat.
    For two weeks I laid off squatting and running and did low impact cycling and elliptical for my cardio. I iced my knee night and morning to help with the pain, then wore a sleeve while a slept and and during work to keep it warm always. Before a work out I warmed up more by cycling and foam rolling the quad. Pain was gone when warmed up.
    After two week knee felt better and I'm ramping up the weight in my squats now. Now going into week three I'm gonna start on the treadmill and see if it flares up. I'm hoping to get back to my squat weight in a few weeks.
    It's now a constant balance of finding that line and not crossing that line for the rest of my life. If I do cross it, I have to take a few steps back and push on. I can live with that as frustrating as it is.
    I'm in my early 30s and don't want a serious knee probs getting older, since it'll be harder to deal with later in life. I've yet to have kids and want to be active in their lives when the time comes, yet I don't want to be a coach potato just to avoid injury. I love being active and hope to be no matter what age I'm at.


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  • 02
    Dec2014
    • Injury Status In Pain
    • Chronicity 2 - 3 Months

    Treatment Ratings

      Not Improved
      Physical Therapy, Ice, Rest, Stretching, Strengthening Exercises, Cross training

    In march 2014 I was crazy excited to train to bike up one of my favorite mountains. I started training early in the season. I haven't had a car in like...5 years and uphill/downhill street riding is part of my norm. I ride trails on the weekends and early mornings on some weekdays. In addition, I was doing some light running and squat workouts.

    Anyway. Long story short is, I had pain under my kneecaps when I was resting, thought that it was a sign of be being whiny, so I pushed harder, which made it worse. Both knees had the same thing going. I don't have insurance, so I had to go by Dr. Google and some friends, but runner's knee seems to fit my symptoms. I did nothing, rested, elevated, iced, compressed, all that stuff. I did that for a couple weeks. Then weeks turned into months. It hurt to walk across my apartment, it hurt to sit, it hurt to freaking lay down.

    I'd read this stuff that would say "oh, you have runner's knee? Try riding a bike!" and I'd smack my forehead. There are 2 things that make my knee freak out instantly, that's anything resembling a pedaling motion and squats.

    It's been 8 months. I'm going crazy. I didn't realize how much of myself was wrapped up in riding/hiking/spelunking, but dammit, being immobile is really wearing me down psychologically. I can't even get freaking groceries because I don't have a car. I haven'