Tag Archive | knee exercises

KNEE PAIN WHILE RUNNING? ( by Pilates Wise in Carlsbad, Encinitas, Oceanside)

Got knee pain while running ? Pilates helps.

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Knee pain is very common overuse syndrome for runners. Pain is our body’s alarm system telling us that something is wrong. However, many runners ignore this natural alarm system and just keep running. Some runners even look for help from pain medications or knee brace.

But did you know that running with pain changes your strike? You probably start shifting weight more to your non-pain side and maybe start limping a little. This compensatory movement pattern put uneven pressure to your other joints, muscles and ligaments and leads to muscle imbalances, and over the time pain and injury elsewhere.

Two Imagemost common injuries for runners are Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome and Iliotibial (IT) Band Syndrome. Many runners think that just wearing knee brace or band help them to keep running. Unfortunately, these two common knee injuries develop over time from overuse and knee brace or band doesn’t appear to provide additional. Knee brace may even inhibit your normal joint function causing the pain continue or move to the other areas of the body. The best brace is your own muscle brace.

If you are experiencing knee pain from overuse, something is going on and need to be fixed. The essential components of treating your overuse injuries are stretching, strengthening and stability exercises. Muscle imbalance between quadriceps, hamstrings, calves, IT-band and glutealis muscles, are very common for people with knee pain. Tight muscles like hamstrings , quadriceps (Rectus femoris) or IT-band are pulling the knee joint and knee cap out of their proper alignment by causing abnormal stress into the knee joint. Gluteus medius and Quadriceps (Vastus lateralis, Vastus medialis) muscles weakness, which is very common for runners, causes problem with knee joint stabilization. Unstable knee joint is more vulnerable to injury and also put unnecessary stress to ligaments, muscles and tendons around the knee joint.

One-on-One Pilates with experienced Pilates instructor, who has a good knowledge about knee injuries, biomechanics and anatomy, can help with typical runners overuse injuries. Pilates equipment are perfect for knee rehabilitation. They are spring loaded, and very gentle for the joints by putting less pressure for knee joint while strengthen the supporting muscle around joint. In Pilates training improves hip-knee-ankle alignment and muscle balance which often causes your knee problem in the first place. In Pilates we have great attention to whole body alignment from head to toe and we focus on gaining strength, stability and mobility – not only your the injured & weaker side but also the whole body. Besides as knee rehabilitation, Pilates is also very good as overall cross-training form for runners to prevent also from other injuries.

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Runners’ Knee Pain – Pilates Stabilizes and Prevents

The knee joint is the largest and most complicated joint in the body. Knee is subjected to an enormous workload during any sport activity, especially running. The running motion itself puts a lot of stress to the knee joints, and if there are also anatomical abnormalities and muscle imbalances the stress become higher and often leads overuse injuries. Prevention is most important way to keep away from knee injuries Focusing on muscular imbalances with Pilates helps knee joints working more efficiently and ergonomically. Pilates also works well as a part of knee rehabilitation by restoring joint function and re-educating correct (all) joints movement patterns.

The most common runner’s knee overuse injuries are patellofemoral pain syndrome (runner’s knee, chondromalachia) and iliotibial band syndrome (ITBS).

Patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS) has pain in front of the kneecap and may also include crunching and cracking sound when bending knees. Pain is most severe after hill running. The underlying cause is likely to be either anatomical abnormality (flat feet, foot overpronation, knock-knee, Q-ankle) or deficit of strength and/ or flexibility in the surrounding muscles. Runners who develop patellofemoral pain syndrome have often tight and strong outer quatriceps muscles (vastus lateralis) and weak inner side of quadriceps (vastus medialis). Both of those muscles stabilize kneecap and there has to be balance to provide maximal support and proper function.

Runners frequently underuse glutealis (maximus and medius) muscles. Hip muscle weakness also leads to dysfunction and increases forces on knees and feet while running. It is possible for weak hip abductors to contribute to knee pain since it will cause the femur to rotates inwards by causing patella misalignment (and patellofemoral pain). So, hip mucles are very important role for runner’s proper biomechanics as well as knee joint stability and function.

Iliotibial band syndrome (ITB) has pain and inflammation on the outside of the knee, where the iliotibial band (a muscle on the outside of the thigh) becomes tendinous. Tightness is felt also outside of knee and pain turns burning or stinging during running especially down-hills and disappears when stop running. Repetitive running motion causes ITB and anatomical abnormalities like foot overpronation and bow-knee increase the tightness of the iliotibial band. The muscle imbalance between weak quadriceps and tight hamstring and iliotibial band (ITB) can also cause the iliotibial band syndrome. Iliotibial band as well as quadriceps and hamstrings muscles function are the first place to provide knee stability.

Pilates is good for knee injury prevention and rehabilitation

Pilates is a good conditioning and cross-training program for runners. Adding Pilates can help runners restore muscular imbalances in the legs by increasing the flexibility of tight hip flexors and hamstrings, strengthen hip adductors, abductors and quadriceps muscles to help keep knee and hip joints more stable. Pilates foundation is about alignment head to toe and it is re-educating the muscles and joints work together by emphasizing body awareness. If you have underlying knee problem like iliotibial band syndrome, the best cure for it is a special ITB-stretching program, but Pilates is still a great addon to balancing your muscles weakness or tightness. It is recommend in Pilates training that instructor focuses on knee joints neural position and full, smooth range of motion. In Pilates leg and hip work the pillow or ball between legs helps the people with patellofemoralis pain syndrome to engage a weak vastus medialis. A specific Pilates program which is designed for your special needs helps you keep your body strong and balanced without injuries and enables you enjoy more of your sports that you love.

Please check out pilatesWise  youtube clip infos about patellofemorial pain syndrome and Iliotibilais Band syndrome http://www.pilateswise.com/pilates-youtube-videos.html