#My1000hours: Rest is vital for niggling knees
Q: My training is going well. I don’t have any problems when I run, my knees are achy afterwards and the following day. They are particularly sore coming downstairs or if I sit for long periods of time. What should I do?
A: The knee joint is made up of two sections: the main knee joint is where the long thigh bone (femur) and shin bone (tibia) meet. This works as a hinge, and bends and straightens to allow you to shock absorb and then propel yourself forwards as it extends during the end phase of your push off.
The other part of the knee joint comprises your kneecap (patella) and the surface of your thigh bone. This functions as a pulley and allows the quadriceps muscles, attached to it, to get better leverage to control shock absorption and propulsion during running.
Since both joints only like to bend and straighten, any excessive twisting forces placed on these tissues can cause irritation or pain and tissue damage. As we run, the hip/trunk muscles should stablilise and keep the knee joint working in a straight up and down piston-like movement.
Fatigue or weakness in these muscles can cause injury and pain similar to what you are describing. Typical treatment would focus on strengthening the lumbo-pelvic region responsible for stabilising your knee, while local treatment would target trigger points in the muscles surrounding the knee. This would be coupled with a period of rest from impact to allow the tissues to settle.
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