Knees are a very complex area, and unfortunately knee pain isn’t as easily addressed as some other areas of chronic pain. Like we’ve said before, your first stop should be a doctor to make sure that there aren’t any structural issues with your knees. Knee pain may come and go, may flare up with use, may just bother you when you’re walking up stairs- but talk to your doctor before you do anything; then come and see us. Whatever you do, DO NOT assume you have to live with the pain- YOU DON’T!
When a member comes in complaining of knee pain (having first been to the doctor), there are several common relief strategies we go over.
First off is use: chronic knee pain can often come with overuse or too much load. Simply put- we help members come up with a plan to lose weight which reduces the stress on your joints.
Runners often experience knee pain due to tightness of the muscles. In this case we recommend foam rolling/massaging and stretching the muscles that pull on your knee; consistent massage or stretching of the quads, hamstrings, and/or glutes can help alleviate a good deal of the pain. You may see almost immediate pain relief as your muscles stop pulling so hard on your knees (the joint). HOWEVER- no amount of foam rolling will help if your knee pain is coming from a wearing down of the meniscus (which is the cushion inside your knee). That is why it’s so important to see a doctor first.
Once you’ve alleviated the immediate pain your next step is to strengthen the muscles and increase mobility. (we talked about mobility a few months ago in our Functional Fitness post) There are ways to work on strengthening your lower body without putting undue stress on (painful) knees. As every case is different we really believe you should talk to a Certified Personal Trainer for this. They’ll help you develop a routine and strategy that will work for YOU and your pain areas.
And it’s worth saying again- please don’t suffer through chronic pain. You can live pain free. We want to help with that, come talk to us.
We wish you good health,
Columbia Basin Racquet Club
Photo credit:Esther Max via Flickr