What is runner’s knee?

You might have heard the term “runner’s knee” before. It’s a common injury affecting many runners and can be a real pain. Runner’s knee, also known as Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome, means that you have dull pain around the front of the knee (patella). This is where the knee connects with the lower end of the thighbone (femur). Runner’s knee is most common in those who run and play sports that involve running and jumping.2 In most cases, pain increases with activity or after sitting for long periods with the knees bent. Most people can manage symptoms with rest, changes in activity levels or physical therapy.3


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Symptoms of runners knee | Flarin


Symptoms of runner’s knee include:

  • Pain during activities that bend the knee, including squatting or climbing stairs.3
  • Pain after sitting for extended periods with your knees bent.3
  • Rubbing, grinding, or clicking sound of the kneecap that you hear when you bend and straighten your knee.1
  • Kneecap that is tender to the touch.
Causes of runners knee | Flarin

Causes of runner’s knee

Although the exact cause of runner’s knee is unknown, it may be linked to: 1,2,3

  • Overuse
  • Injury
  • Muscle imbalances or weaknesses
  • Hard playing surfaces
  • Poor foot support
  • Kneecap alignment problems
  • Tight hamstrings or Achilles’ tendons
Treatment for runner's knee | Flarin

Treatment and Prevention

If you think you may have runner’s knee, you should consult your GP so they can find the best treatment for you. Luckily, mild form runner’s knee can also be treated at home. Common treatments include supportive braces, cold packs, stretching exercises, elevation, and over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen.1,2 It is advised to follow the RICE method to ease symptoms: Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation.3 The best way to prevent runner’s knee is to take steps to reduce your risk of injury. This includes wearing correctly fitting shoes, running on soft surfaces, gradually increasing your mileage, and incorporating strength training exercises into your routine.1,2

Although runner’s knee can be painful to endure, taking steps to reduce your risk of injury and treating any pain or inflammation promptly can help prevent and treat runner’s knee and keep running pain-free.