Knee pain is one of the post common causes of pain experienced by people when they exercise. Due to the complex nature and different management required for knee pain, I’ve broken this blog into a few parts.
The knee is designed to be a hinge that swings backwards and forwards, held together by two cruciate (inside the knee joint) ligaments and two collateral (outside the joint and part of the joint capsule) ligaments. These ligaments are typically injured with a rotational twisting force or a side to side (lateral) force. These injuries are commonly seen in the football codes, ball sports and multi-direction activities, but can just as easily be done slipping down stairs or on wet tiles around the home.
Ligament injuries to the knee vary in severity from uncomfortable to debilitating and can require surgery to reconstruct the ligament (typically required to the ACL if ruptured). Braces can be used to excellent effect on the knee to assist with healing the collateral ligaments and in some cases support the cruciate ligaments pre or post surgery, in more severe injuries.
Rehabilitation from a knee injury, first requires correct diagnosis and treatment and then like many injuries strengthening and retraining of proprioception (see previous blog on Proprioception). The good news is that Physiotherapy is the best treatment option for almost all knee injuries, with only a handful of knee injuries requiring a specialist opinion.
Ligament injuries as mentioned are usually due to rotational or lateral forces, but they can be screened for and high-risk individuals can be given training exercises to decrease their risk of ligament injury. Studies have shown hopping and jumping drills as effective screening and rehabilitation tools for predicting and decreasing the risk of a knee ligament injury.
If you have questions or concerns about you or your child’s risk of a knee ligament injury and would like further information, give us a call!
“Don’t let knee pain stand in the way of your goals!”