Thursday, February 3, 2011

Knee Pain?

Seems like this is the time of year for aches and pains. The volume/intensity keeps going up and, for some, week long 'survival' camps pop up to remind us (in the weeks after the camp) that there is a conseqence for pushing to hard/too fast. It is always interesting to me that athletes will do whatever crazy intervals they have on their 'TRAINING' but if asked to ice, or stretch, or alter diet there is much resistance. We are Human!

Photo From Great Resource and Great People at www.networkfitness.com 

While a good progression rate will help I think there is a few things we can do to avoid injury induced interruptions in training.  Saying hello to your favorite Massage Therapist, Chiropractor or Physiotherapist is always a good idea to keep things in check but any of those practitioners will tell you that the biggest mistake people make is not doing work on their own to keep injury healing progressing and to prevent other issues.

A few ideas to include in your 'TRAINING':

1) Self Myofacial Release and Stretching   (check out resources page for more links)
   - Key things here
       1) find out your trouble areas and address at least daily if not twice daily ... its free and its easy, do it.
        B) Take your time, move slow, don't push to the point of tears but find a low level tension. Hold the point of tension and breath into it for several cycles of breath while waiting for a release in the tension. It should take 2-3min to stretch each muscle/position and 2-3 min to do any given SMR/Foam Roll movement (per side) working from one end to the other 1 inch at a time, taking time to breath.
         C) Make sure you are not balancing during stretches or SMR (foam roll)
              - Aim for 4 points of contact on most of the SMR movements, except when standing.
*** most people do some sort of balancing/core movement, especially on the 'IT BAND' ... this isn't doing a lot, especially if you are rolling quickly up and down the length of the muscle ****
            
2) Icing - Its well studied. Even if you don't have an injury spend some time with an ice pack massaging or use a cold bath/shower.
  ** for injury/trouble areas I use 15min on every 2-3 hrs but find your sweet spot.

3) Check your shoes/cleats ... if stuff is making noise or jiggling around you are stabilizing that. Best case you are loosing friends to the noise and some energy stabilizing. Worst case you are getting tight/injured and screwing up your coordination/pedal stroke.

4) Don't guess your bike fit - spend some time ... you shouldn't get numb, or rubbed excessively, or have any injury get worse.
  - in extreme cases/big rides/ pushing your limits your going to get a sore butt, and perhaps some muscular fatigue/soreness but we get back to the smart progression of training and risk vs. reward discussion from earlier in the post.
- If you are in doubt a Professional Bike Fit for $200 dollars might be a good investment when considering weeks of Rehab post injury without it. Ask around and find a respected 'Fitter' in your area, who is knowledgeable about functional assessment and anatomy in addition to proper bike bio-mechanics. I recommend Steve Neal but please do look around if you go this route, and see what you can accomplish tinkering on your own first.


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2 comments:

Thanks for this easy exercises on strengthening the knees. These are great and my podiatrists also recommended exercises as well.

I recommend this exercise as well. This exercise is proven to strengthen and massage the knees that may relieve some pain on the part.

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