Knee Pain After Running

November 5, 2021
6 Minute Read
6 Minute Read
November 5, 2021

any new runners are knowledgeable of the various advantages running may provide concerning health and fitness. 

Injury is often a possibility, particularly knee pain, as rookie runners are susceptible to it if proper running technique and form aren't followed during training.

Your body hasn't yet accustomed to the repetitive activity if you're just a beginner runner. Thus, you're more prone to get aches. 

The excessive impact and orientation of the body due to incorrect posture during running is considered a common contributing factor in injuring knees and other muscles in this type of exercise.

Knee pain is the most common running injury, and it develops in almost 50 percent of beginner runners. Pain and inflammation develop within a few weeks and continue to worsen unless the problem is addressed. 

Often the pain is blamed on overuse or weak hip muscles. Still, these factors are actually caused by deficient foot and lower leg positioning during running.

Why does my knee hurt after running?

The most important rule to remember while starting to run is to take it slowly. One of the greatest typical blunders made by beginner runners is to begin by jogging continuously with no walk intervals.

'Vague' knee pain is frequently a symptom of overdoing mileage, wearing improper shoes, or having some form of imbalance, tightness, or weakness elsewhere unless you've had an accident or an extreme injury to the knee itself. 

Running hurts. However, if the soreness improves or disappears as the run progresses, that's a positive thing. It requires time for the body to acclimate to the sudden stress you're putting it under. If the discomfort continues, worsens during your run, or vanishes while you're jogging but returns with fury after you rest, you may have an injury.

If you're a newbie runner with knee pain, don't be alarmed. It's not arthritis; in fact, a 2014 study discovered that running might help avoid osteoarthritis produced by beating the pavements.

5 Causes of Knee Pain

  1. Overuse - The tissues all across your kneecap might be irritated by repeatedly bending your knees or doing a lot of high-stress workouts, such as running.
  2. Your bones aren't lined up - If some of the bones in your ankles and your hips, including your kneecap, are out of place, it might put a lot of pressure on particular areas. Your kneecap will thus be unable to slide easily through its grooves, causing pain.
  1. Issues with your feet - Hypermobile feet (if the joints within or surrounding them make more movements than they should), falling arches (flat feet), and overpronation are examples of these conditions (which means your foot rolls down and inward when you step). These frequently alter your walking pattern, which can result in knee pain.
  1. Weak or unbalanced thigh muscle - When you bend or flex your kneecap, the quadriceps, the huge muscles in the front of your thigh, retain it in place. It's possible that your kneecap won't stay in the right place if they're weak or tight.
  2. Chondromalacia patella - a disorder wherein the cartilage beneath your kneecap degenerates

Ways to prevent knee pain

Do not strike with your heels

Avoid over-striding and allowing your feet to get past you. Find it necessary to never stride beyond your knees. Also, practice swinging your legs backward rather than forwards. Once your feet touch in front of your knees, you're effectively applying the brakes with each step, causing a massive impact on your knees, which are never supposed to be shock absorbers.

All of this pressure on your knees eventually results in joint pain or muscle tightness. If this happens to you, pay attention to what your body tells you and modify your stride mechanics, or you may find yourself on the bench.

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Avoid lifting your knees when running

Raising your knees causes the feet to strike the pavement directly ahead of your torso, slowing you down with each stride. Maintain your knees low and swinging. Flex your knees and allow your heels to float up behind you at the end of each step. "Knees low, heels high" should be your mantra at all times.

Maintain a running stance with your feet pointed in the direction you're going

Since you're torquing your knees with every foot strike while your feet splay, it might induce knee pain.

Always keep your feet oriented in the position you want to go when you're running. Bend your entire leg inwards until your feet are level and looking forward. By strengthening your adductors and realigning your legs, you can heal your condition permanently. Then, rather than twisting as you bend, your knees will flex in the way that they were designed to bend. Inflammation of the iliotibial band (IT band), which connects the tibia right below the knee, can be caused by foot splay. Leg misalignment is frequently misdiagnosed as a knee issue.

Lean forward with your entire body

Remember that once you put your foot in front of your torso, you're putting the brakes on, and the shock of the braking goes right to your knee. Constantly attempt to land on your midfoot.

Maintain bent and soft knees

Several runners overstride before landing and straightening their knees. The heel and knee take a tremendous amount of punishment as a result. Create a vow to yourself that you will never straighten your legs when running.

Ways to alleviate your pain and hasten your recovery

  • Rest your knee.  Avoid performing activities that might worsen the pain, such as jogging, crouching, lunging, or prolonged standing and sitting.
  • Icing your knees. Put ice on your knee to minimize pain and swelling. Do it for three days, or until the pain subsides, for half an hour every four hours.
  • Do strengthening and stretching exercises. This is particularly beneficial for your hamstring muscle. A physical therapist may be recommended by your doctor will show you how to perform it.
  • Take NSAIDs (e.g., naproxen or ibuprofen). These medications are used to treat swelling and pain. However, they can have adverse side effects, such as an increased risk of bleeding and ulceration. Until your doctor advises otherwise, follow the directions on the label.
  • Lie or sit down with your leg elevated on a knee pillow. Using a knee pillow greatly helps in alleviating knee pain. If you want to learn more about it, click on the button below.

FAQs

  1. What should I do to maintain my knees in good shape?

It is critical to maintaining a healthy weight. Because being overweight raises your risk of acquiring osteoarthritis, keep a weight ideal for your height and age to reduce pressure on your knees and lessen the likelihood of knee problems.

Moreover, when you become fatigued, you must come to a halt. Your muscles that support your ligament won't perform excellent work if they're weary. 

Allow your knees to rest. Other sorts of cardio should be incorporated into your routine a few times a week, especially if you're prone to injuries. This can assist in reducing repetitive strain. Cycling is one possibility. Another thing you can do from home is circuit training.

  1. When should I see a physician?

Each person's pain threshold is different. If your knee swells after an injury, you should seek medical attention. 

Even though the swelling subsides, you should get your knee checked because you could have harmed something within the joints. If you're suffering from arthritic discomfort, see your doctor, and the bad days exceed the good ones.

  1. Is it safe to run with a hurt knee?

If your knee hurts, don't run. If the pain persists after a week of rest, consult your doctor or a physiotherapist. 

The source of your knee discomfort and how bad it is will determine how quickly you can resume running. It would be ideal if you sought medical guidance.

  1. How often should I run every week?

Your exercise history, 'running age' (how long you've been running), calendar age, injury history, capacity to recover, and lifestyle will all influence how frequently you run. Some fit dog walkers in their 50s start running and can easily accomplish 4-5 runs each week.

Conclusion

Physically inactive people who are obese and have no prior fitness experience may need to start by limiting their runs to 2 times a week.

For total beginners, experts recommend starting with not more than twice per week and gradually increasing to three times per week, accompanied by cross-training and brisk walking.

Gradually increase the time period you spend exercising and 'checking' your tolerance. Start by running twice a week, then increase to thrice per week after two months and no injuries. 

Keep an eye out for minor issues or ailments, and adjust your workout accordingly. You'll be able to run more often as your fitness improves. However, begin carefully and gradually increase.

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