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Posted on 04-14-2016
I would like to address specifically Medial joint pain in the knee. The medial side of your knee is inside surface that would touch if you knock your knees together. When not associated with an injury, typically medial joint line pain of the knee can be traced back up the kinetic chain to an imbalance in the hip. When certain muscles get weak (Gluteus Medius) and others compensate for them and get tight (Piriformis) this causes external rotation of the femur. External rotation of the femur causes your toes to point away from each other "Think Duck footed", this change in the direction of force applied to the knee joint while standing and walking causes the inside (medial) of the knee to be overly stressed and will lead to inflammation and pain.
How do you diagnose this to be the case? Simple. Close your eyes, march in place and relax your body, stop with your eyes closed and don't move the rest of your body. Now look down and open your eyes. Are both feet toes pointing straight ahead? Or is one angling away from the midline? If one or both feet are pointing away from the midline than likely you have an imbalance in your hip or hips.
What to do. You think your hip is imbalanced, how do you balance it out to take stress off of your knee and restore proper function? Simple. You have to lengthen and strengthen. Lengthen the tight overcompensating muscles and strengthen the inhibited and weak muscles. Lengthen the piriformis muscle using the "Figure 4" stretch, where you are lying on your back, crossing your ankle over the opposite knee and bring both legs up to your chest. You will also want to address the posterior hip capsule if that is reducing your femurs ability to achieve internal rotation. The primary muscle needing strengthening is the Gluteus Medius, which is our primary lateral hip stabilizer. This can be done by performing the "Modified Side Bridge", one legged stability holds, and "Clam Shell" exercises. And finally postural changes, while you are standing for prolonged periods of time, every once in a while look down, straighten your toes out and remember; Toes, Knees, and Nose. All should be pointing in the same direction.
Please share your story or leave a comment about your experience with Knee Pain in San Diego, or come visit our San Diego Chiropractic office.
-Dr. Ryan Curda
Or visit our Pacific Beach Chiropractic Center at
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