Bhavana Reddy, a friend of mine who also happens to be a runner and my Physical Therapist at Kaiser Permanente, had me do stretches for the quad, hamstring, calf, IT band, hip flexors and hip rotator muscles. We also did strengthening exercises: for the quads, especially the VMO (vastus medialis oblique – one of the muscles that make up the quads); the glut medius (hip abductors); and core. Bhavana Reddy, a PT at Kaiser Permanente, says, “Core strengthening exercises are very good for runners, likes bridges or bridges with kick out.”
This includes runners coming back from another injury – like me. I came out of the pool after my stress fracture and went right to the Newport Marathon course. Weeks later, I developed runner’s knee and my summer race calendar was shot.
You can cross-train to develop fitness, make sure you’re wearing the right shoes, try to find softer surfaces for your long runs, and avoid increasing your weekly mileage by more than 10% per week.
Tomorrow we’ll wrap up the series by finding out if you can “cure” Runner’s Knee.