One area of the body we treat a lot of here at The Physio & Sports Injury Clinic in Rhos on Sea are Knees! Particularly at this time of the year people seem to be prone to a lot of knee troubles. Whether you’ve just come back from a skiing trip, you’ve just taken up running or you’re doing more DIY/gardening now its spring.
So today I wanted to share with you my four top things that cause knee pain.
Modern lifestyles don’t help our knees. We all drive to work, have rather sedentary/sat down jobs and then we try to fit in some exercise here & there where we can. This boom and bust in activity levels each day/week is hard for the knee to handle. The body likes consistency with no erratic change. Our UK climate also doesn't help with this either - in winter we all reduce our activity levels down as it gets colder/wetter and darker, but then in spring/summer we all then do too much as the weather gets better again! Lets not even get onto the topic of Diet!!! (Bad diet = weight gain = more pressure going through the knees!)
Wearing the wrong footwear.
How many of us buy shoes purely because they look good? Unfortunately anything good for us is not that fashionable. I see far too many people wearing inappropriate/non-supportive shoes - e.g. slippers, pumps, Ugg boots, flip-flops, steel toe cap boots and not forgetting high-heeled women’s shoes . Shoes generally are so important to support the foot properly when in weight-bearing, which in turn stabilises the knee joint above. Over the last few years there are been a big push within the running community to go back to more minimalist (flat) footwear. However, this has lead to more knee pain being reported (as the human body has structurally adapted to wearing shoes for walking). Picking shoes doesn't have to be an expensive exercise - just find something thats comfortable & supports your feet properly.
Not strengthening the knee muscles
People assume fast exercise (like running) strengthens muscle, but it doesn’t! Fast movements can maintain your physique but it will not trigger new growth & build new soft tissue in specific areas. Its the slow stuff that does. As we all get older we naturally loose muscle (which cannot be stopped), therefore as we age we should strength our muscles more to prevent weakness otherwise wear and tear may set in. I can see why people do fast exercise - It’s FUN! However, fun is not always the best option for your health! This is where walking, gym, pilates and physio-based exercise can help.
Not getting enough sleep
Sleep is vital for your health. You’ll spend half your life doing it!! One of its functions is to allow your body to recover & repairs any day-to-day damage. Research suggests that less than 8 hours sleep per night puts you at 1.7x more risk of injury. Tiredness is often a big reason for people slipping, tripping or falling over, which often leads to a knee injury.
Are you doing any of these four things?
If your answer is ‘YES’, putting an end to any/or all of these four habits will help prevent knee pain from getting any worse than it needs to be.
If you or a friend is suffering with knee pain at the moment, there’s obviously so much more that can be done through specialist Physio treatment from us.