A common cause for knee pain and what you can do about it.

Many people have experienced some type of knee pain. They are the largest joints in the body and it carries all of our body weight every day, so it is important to keep them healthy and listen when they are telling you it feels uncomfortable.

There are many reasons for knee pain: injury, overuse and arthritis, just to name a few. But did you know that you could have knee pain from underuse?

Have you ever taken a break from working out, or started a routine for the first time and noticed the ‘front of your knee’ has a dull pain? This is most likely due to the inactivity, thus weak, tight muscles. It could also be due to improper form, probably a combination of both.

*Side note: I am NOT a doctor {hard to believe, I know ;)}; this is just what I have seen in many of my clients. Please see your physician for an evaluation and prognosis!

knee pain

KNEE PAIN DUE TO WEAK MUSCLES

If you are just starting to take your exercise routine seriously, you may experience knee pain due to weak muscles, and not just the quads (the muscles around the knee). The glutes, core and hamstrings play a role in knee stability as well.

Having weak glutes can cause the quads to overwork and put unnecessary strain on the knee.

A strong core allows your back to stay in a neutral position, thus allowing your knee to be in the best possible position for movement.

KNEE PAIN DUE TO TIGHT MUSCLES

It is no surprise that sitting at a desk all day can have a negative effect on your health because of inactivity, but it can also cause your muscles to tighten.

Your muscles also get tight when you exercise because they contract; if you do not stretch after they will stay in that position much longer.

Tight muscles pull on the knee, causing unwanted stress to the knee.

stretching

KNEE PAIN DUE TO IMPROPER FORM

If you are doing exercises with bad technique it can take a toll on your body.

When you do a squat incorrect, most of the time your knee will be too far forward over the foot, causing too much stress on the knee.

SOLUTIONS

RICE

Rest– Make sure you are taking sufficient time to rest your body after a workout. You might need 72 hours after a workout instead of 48 in the beginning. Listen to your body.

Ice– Try icing your knees/ quads for 10- 20 minutes after the workout. This will reduce inflammation.

Compression– This will reduce inflammation as well.

Elevation– Do this after you work out, as it will help reduce swelling.

STRENGTHEN THE MUSCLES

QUADRICEPS- Quads play a crucial role in supporting the knee, so it is crucial to take extra time to strengthen them if you are experiencing this type of pain.

GLUTES- Having strong glutes is important because they are responsible for internal and external rotation of the hips (i.e. walking). When you have weak glutes it can cause your knees to collapse inward when walking. This equals danger!

CORE- When you have a weak core your posture suffers, thus putting your body in all kinds of compromising positions and putting unwanted strain on joints.

STRETCH AND FOAM ROLL

Stretching the muscles will help prevent unnecessary force or pulling on the knee.

I have explained the importance of foam rolling in a previous post. It will help release pressure from the ‘knots’ that accumulate from exercise, in turn lengthening the muscles and helping to prevent injury and soreness.

CORRECT FORM

If you are just starting a strength training routine the best thing you can do for yourself is hire a personal trainer. They will educate you on correct technique, which will benefit you forever. Incorrect form can cause serious injuries that could leave you unable to do certain exercises the rest of your life.

Even if it is out of your budget to see one on a regular basis, it would be worth the money to invest in one for one or two sessions.

I hope this has help shed some light on that annoying knee pain you feel after your workouts.

Have a great day!

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22 thoughts on “A common cause for knee pain and what you can do about it.

  1. thanks for this!!
    i’m 99.9% sure my knee pain from all those damn hills (going down the hills) from my tough mudder race. my legs are the strongest muscles in my body and i`m a freak about proper form so i don’t think that’s it. although part of the problem could be that i sometimes don’t do a proper cool down and by sometimes i mean most of the time :/

  2. Thanks, Heather! I like the RICE tips 🙂 Luckily, I don’t usually suffer from knee pain (knock on wood) but when I do I assume it’s from sitting at work all day. I do try to get up as much as possible! Ohhhhh the joys of sitting.

  3. What a great post! When I first started to run, I would get horrible hip pain every time. My personal trainer told me to work out the muscles surrounding my hips and it made the world of difference! Case in point that under training can be a source of injury.

  4. I definitely need to stretch more and I really need to figure out how to use a foam roller because as of current, I don’t feel like I do it correctly, because I don’t feel the “magical” properties that everyone talks about – lol!!

    • Think of it as an investment! I have been looking at prices for a private yoga instructor because I think if I had a few one- on- one training sessions with one I would increase my knowledge and be more inclined to do it! It is going to be my Christmas gift! 🙂

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