As I have been struggling with runner’s knee, I’ve learned that my gluteus medius & minimus are weak muscles – even though I strength train. With a weak hip, it lets my knees collapse in when I start to pronate as I get fatigued after 10, 15, 20 miles, ect. I have had my gait analyzed by a podiatrist and now run with custom orthotic inserts which has been a huge help. However, after taking on a heavier training load, this is an issue that HAS to get fixed.
SO. Physical therapy it it… Here are the stretches and strengthening exercises I am doing for now. I do them every other day after a run so that my muscles are already fatigued.
You need to consult your doc before you start doing anything new.
1. Supine hamstring stretch (do with a yoga strap):
– After your leg is straight, take it across your body to feel a stretch to the outside of the leg/hip
– Lie on your back, place a long strap across the forefoot of one leg and hold one end of the strap in each hand.
– Use the strap to lift your leg straight up, keeping your knee straight, and pulling gently on the strap with your hands until you feel a gentle stretch through out the back of your leg from the hamstring to the calf muscle.
– Hold the position for 60 seconds and relax.
– Return to the start position and repeat
2. Half kneel iliopsoas stretch
– Kneel on one knee with the other leg in front of you foot on the floor, creating a 90 degree angle at the hip and knee.
– Use a chair for support if needed.
– Keep your body upright, tighten your abdominals to limit increased arch in the low back.
– Lean your body weight forward onto the front leg until a stretch is felt in the front of the kneeling hip.
– Hold as prescribed.
– Relax and return to start position.
– Repeat as prescribed.
– NOTE: Maintain Upper body upright and your lower back flatten (not arched.
3. Standing Quad Stretch
– Stand tall in front of a chair and hold on to it for balance with one hand.
– Bend one knee and grab the top of your ankle with the hand on the same side.
– Pull your foot towards buttock. Continue pulling your foot until you feel a gentle stretch on front of the thigh.
– Make sure that the stretching leg remains parallel to the stance leg.
– Keep your abdominals contracted to limit the arch in your back.
– Hold the stretch for _ seconds.
– Return to initial position and repeat on opposite leg.
4. Standing Resisted Abduction
-place band around ankles and take steps to the side
-keep your trunk upright and try not to rock back and forth
5. Crossover Step Up
– Stand next to the step.
– Move the outside leg across the body onto the step.
– Lift yourself up on the step, keeping good knee control and the knee cap aligned with 2nd toe
– Lift the foot front the ground and step to the other side of the step.
– Hips stay level and facing straight ahead throughout the exercise.
– Repeat as prescribed.
6. Single leg squat
-challenge yourself by using a resistance band around your waist pulling you
– Stand on one leg with your foot facing forward.
– Lower your body by pushing your buttocks back and bending the knee.
– Do not let your knee move inward during the movement. Keep your knee in line with your 2nd toe or the laces of your shoe.
Maintain a tight core throughout the exercise.
– Return to starting position and repeat.