Knee pain troubles are rarely just about the knee. The hip and the foot are to blame!
Knee pain is such a common complaint- I would think that almost all of us have sometime suffered from pain in the knee- with running, walking, stairs, kneeling, the gym, or with all of the above!
In my time as a physio (over 20 years, mind you), I have seen the poor knee being almost like the piggy in the middle. The knee often suffers much pain and irritation from its location – by existing between problems of the hip region above and the foot region below.
The bully from above.
Weakness, instability and poor postures above at the hip and pelvis can alter how our weight and movement happens through the knee. These can include:
- Buttock muscle or 'glute' weaknesses.
- Tightness of the outer hip and hamstrings pulling down into the back of the knee.
- Twisting or not keeping the lower back and pelvis controlled with exercise, which then throws the thigh bone into poor alignments and stresses the knee down below.
- Weakness and a lack of balance of the thigh or 'quads' muscles which can cause a pulling of the kneecap from its preferred centre position on the front of your knee.
The bully from below.
The foot is the first to hit the ground when we walk or run and will send the forces from the ground up towards the knee. This can often not be too optimal. Problems here can include:
- Feet arches that are too flat and rolling inward or too high and stiff.
- Tightness of the calf muscles and Achilles from all that high heel wearing!
- Movements of the foot which are compensated due to pain such as in the heel or in the big toe joint.
- Poor fitting shoes squashing up the foot, or old shoes that are not longer absorbing shock well.
The poor piggy in the middle.
As you can see and possibly feel yourself, the knee tries its best to cope with the bullies either side! It is pretty amazing and resilient at putting with some of this bullying, but over time, the knee decides it has had enough.
So, like most injuries of the body that are slow and happening gradually over time, it is the joint copping all the stresses that ends up giving up – pain, swelling, altered movement and generally an unhappy joint.
Does this sound like you?
Your Fernwood and Fix Program physiotherapists are here to assess you from waist to toe, diagnosing the probable causes to knee pain. Knee pain responds extremely well to physiotherapy with fantastic outcomes when it comes to returning to exercise and a pain free knee.
Every knee is different, just as every body is different. With this in mind, careful assessment and targeted treatment , combined with an exercise program to correct the imbalances will get you back on track.
Contact us for an appointment and we can fix your knee pain.