Posted by: JC | 2009/05/06

First senstive knee - Running.

Dear FitnessDoc,

I have been running for about a year now, starting out slowly and building myself up to longer distances. I knew my shoes were getting a bit old, but they were still confortable and I live in a small town, so we don' t really have a good variety of shoes to buy, so I was just waiting until I got to CPT on Sunday. The shops were closed when I got here, so on Monday morning, I did about 15km and my knee started feeling a bit sensitive afterwards. I bought new shoes yesterday and this morning I ran about 6km with them. My knee is still feeling the same. I don' t think I hurt the actual knee, it might be a bit of inflammation or a muscle. I want to know if I should stop running for a while and any other advice on what I should do now?

Thank you.

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Our expert says:
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I think back off the training for a short while, perhaps the rest of this week, and then let’s see where you are. I don’t think it’s just the shoes, but more likely that you did a long run maybe at the end of travelling down to CT, or maybe at the end of a couple of weeks where you’ve done a little bit more running than your joints are used to. My advice is always that the shoes help, but it’s the training that CAUSES the injury. So it’s the training and therefore that’s what must be reduced. Hopefully you’ve had a bit of a rest since then, and by now you can do a light 4 or 5km run without pain. I’d say just keep it there and see how it goes. If it’s OK, then build up very gradually again. But the key is “VERY” gradually, and don’t rush back. Rather be slow and safe than sorry.

Finally, if the pain doesn’t’ go away, then I would certainly advise that you see a doctor or a physio about it, and make sure you know what is going on. It might be that you have to do some exercises to improve the strength of the muscles and then you’ll find that the problem goes away.

Good luck

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