Tim, James, and I were talking about knee pain last Friday night with Suchocki, and I thought I would cc everyone a follow-up. Sincere apologies for clogging up the team listserve in my first week with ‘self-help’ crap; it will be a rare occurrence, I promise!
After several years with my riding sidelined by chronic knee pain (patello-femoral pain syndrome), and seeing several ortho/sports med physicians in cincinnati (“strengthen your quads!” they all said), I was turned on to the importance of ‘strong butts’ (hip stabilizers) by a cyclist/coach in Chicago and a wonderful Physical therapist here in town (Opal Riddle). Eons ago, we moved our legs in all sorts of directions: we ran more like wide receivers full of ‘juke moves’ requiring strong pelvic stabilizers. Nowadays, the legs of runners and cyclists move only in the front and back direction, and most of us have very weak hip stabilizers. This can result in small imbalances, tight IT bands, and medial or lateral stress on the knee (causing me pain). Strengthening these up yielded relief of pain in about 3-4 weeks.
Tim, I also attached a couple of dorky journal articles about this as well in case you were interested. The role of the Gluteus Medius in hip stabilization and knee pain is relatively new in sports med.
Here’s to pain-free riding!
This first video is fun for its authentic Minnesota accents, and a nice demonstration:
This exercise is harder than it looks:
This one is harder to do when starting out, as you can end up using your paraspinal muscles in your low back too much, but once I got the hang of video #1, I could add this.
This video is just awesome: