08 April 2008 20:31
When going downhill on steep slopes I get a pin prick type pain just under each knee and a sharp pain from my knee to nearly my thigh (on the left hand side) - how can I prevent this?
By Country Walking magazine
We contacted Chartered Physiotherapist Dean Payne of Optimum Sports Performance Centre for advice:
“This type of pain may be caused by a number of problems, but the two most common are patella tendonitis (inflammation of the tendons round the knee) or a tracking issue with the patella itself (where the kneecap shifts slightly out of place as the leg bends).
“These problems may arise from an increase in activity - especially hill walking where great demands are put on the muscles around the knee to stabilise the structure when descending. If this is an acute episode then I would initially consider icing the area to control any inflammation and ease discomfort - apply crushed ice wrapped in a towel or a bag of frozen peas for 15 minutes, several times a day.
"Also try strengthening the surrounding muscles through specific exercises. It's best to see a physiotherapist or sports conditioning coach for appropriate exercises and techniques, as doing the wrong exercises can exacerbate problems rather than cure them.
“And finally – check your footwear. It may be that your foot rolls in or out as you walk, thus stressing the knee - orthotics can help correct this.”
www.optimum-spc.com, 01582 418952