Most common causes of anterior knee pain in runners

Forty-two percent of all overuse injuries affect the knee joint. “Runner’s knee,” is the most common overuse injury among runners. It occurs when a mistracking kneecap (patella) irritates the femoral groove in which it rests on the thighbone (femur). The pain is felt at the front of the knee, either under or around the edges of the knee cap.

Illiotibal band syndrome (ITB) otherwise known as the ITB syndrome. The pain is commonly around the outside edge of the knee. This pain can be quite sharp.

Patella tendonitis is usually associated with pain in the front of the lower part of the knee cap. This is usually only painful after running downhill.

How do you get these diagnosed?

When people come into the clinic, they have often diagnosed themselves and are following a treatment regime that has been prescribed by the internet.

However usually the pain still persists no matter how much they “foam roll” their ITB.

Knee pain whether it is tendonitis, ITB syndrome or patella mal-tracking is often as a result of some thing else. Think outside the box.

As you run, the weight that is distributed through your knee can be up to 10 times your body weight. This is a huge amount of stress that gets transmitted throughout your body and often leads to pain.

What is often missed is what your knee and also the rest of your body does when you are on one leg. If your body does not have the strength to hold you upright then your knee takes it all.


Can you do a single leg squat without your hip dropping?

Does your spine rotate? This is important as your upper thoracic vertebrae are torque convertors; i.e. a way of transferring load. If these are restricted then the load will increase in another part of the body

Are you able to hop and stay balanced? Are both feet the same?

If you feel that this resonates with you then consider looking at some strength exercises that are not just associated to your knee but also your whole body. Ask your local gym for a Personal trainer to help assist your running and also a running specialist that will help you with your drills. Alternatively if you are in a lot of pain, please contact us so that we can look at your running as well and your whole body in order to connect the dots.

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