If you suffer from runner's knee, learn about how to improve the condition of runners knee. Runner's knee ( or Patellofemoral pain) is a common injury in runners. Runner's knee is characterized by swelling and pain in the cartilage surrounding the knee cap and the top of the femur. In runner's knee, the cartilage in the knee deteriorates and the knee becomes aligned incorrectly, which causes the pain and inflammation. Here are some ways to improve the condition of runner's knee:
- Proper training. Many beginning runners have trouble understanding that just because you "can" run, doesn't always mean you should. Your training and your mileage need to be build up slowly over time. You should not increase your training more than 10 percent each week. Additionally, it is important to realize that different workouts require different amounts of recovery (e.g. don't do a speed workout the day after you run hills).
- Proper shoes. The most important component of improving the condition of runner's knee is to wear proper shoes. Most runners (especially new runners) overpronate (i.e. turn their foot in too much) when they run. Runners who overpronate need running shoes with medial arch support and the right amount of cushioning. Make sure you are not running in old running shoes. Get a new pair of running shoes every 300 to 400 miles.
- Strengthen your quads. Your quadriceps help stabilize your knee cap. Many people who suffer from runner's knee have weak quads. In order to strengthen your quads and improve the condition of runner's knee, you will need to do strength training two to three times per week. Start by doing twelve to twenty lunges or leg lifts (unless these exercises exacerbate your runner's knee).
- Reduce inflammation. Runner's knee results in vast inflammation throughout the knee. In order to improve the condition of runner's knee, it is important to reduce the inflammation. Talk to your doctor about taking an anti-inflammatory drug. Ice and elevate your knee after you run.