Unfortunately, recent studies have shown that every year, 50% to 80% of runners get injured. Triathletes don't escape this reality. When an injury happens, it's easy to get lost in all the therapeutic care and advice available. To get clear insight, follow this series of articles on the most common runner injuries by Rémi Bergeron, physiotherapist and running expert.


Running Injury: Patellofemoral Syndrome

For runners, knee pain is by far the leading cause for consulting a health professional. In many cases, the diagnosis of patellofemoral syndrome is made. That's why it's also called “Runner's Knee”! This syndrome is characterized by anterior knee pain during and / or after the run, but also during squatting exercises, jumps, going down stairs or even during prolonged sitting with the knees bent (like at the theater or movie theater). The cause of this syndrome has long been attributed to weakness, muscle imbalances or misalignment of the patella or the leg. Current prospective studies on the subject show us that this is not the case. Indeed, it is caused by an increase in compressive loads between the patella and the femur beyond their capacity, which irritates this patellofemoral joint. The runners who suffer from it have done too much, too fast.

The key to success in the therapy of this condition lies mainly in the right balance of training. Training should be modified to temporarily reduce knee load, to control symptoms, and then gradually resume the load. Thus, the joint can adapt to compressive forces. In many cases, our recommendations will be to avoid running down hills, speed training, plyometrics (jumps) and squats to resume them later when the condition has improved. Long runs are recommended, at reduced speeds while avoiding pain. The literature shows that a combination of quadriceps, gluteus, and abdominal strengthening exercises, in a well-balanced training, helps recovery. Also, some tapings could decrease the symptoms and allow to progress more quickly in a return to normal training.

As each case is different, consulting a therapist who has expertise in running is very often necessary. Their advice is primordial when it comes to choosing the right balance between training and exercises. For more information, visit us at www.actionsport.physio. Our therapists who are experts in running will be pleased to help you manage an injury, but also reduce your risk of injury and even increase your performance. In addition, our running analysis service will allow you to start your running season with confidence.

Enjoy your run!

Rémi Bergeron
Running expert