Knee pain /Patella femoral syndrome exercises

Patella femoral pain and physical therapy The picture above is from this website.

A common cause of pain in the knee is called patella femoral syndrome. The cause is due to the knee cap and the femur bone (thigh bone) not fitting well due to tightness in some areas, weakness in others, and/or improper signals of the brain to the muscles.  In the picture above you can see the knee cap not fitting properly with the femur bone.  Women are more likely to have these type of knee problems due to body structure.

Rehabilitation is loosening things that are tight, strengthening things that are weak,  and improving the signal of the brain to the muscles.

The IT band is fascia that is connected to the outside part of the knee cap.  Often times it is very tight and it pulls the knee cap too far laterally.  This  makes the patella or knee cap not fit like it should in the groove of the femur and thus the knee can become painful.

The IT band is shown here.  Here is a wonderful exercise to help lessen the pull of the IT band on the knee cap.  This product usually costs about 30 dollars.  If you are strapped for cash you could use a pool noodle or a rolling pin. The rolling pin could be pretty brutal though as far as pain goes.  This exercise is going to hurt but it will help you in the long run.

Roll on this device starting from the top of the hip to the to the top of the knee slowly 10 x. I will be posting a video soon of this exercise.   Perform 2 x a day, 6 days a week for 6 weeks. The next area below is the gluteus medius- it is an external rotator of the hip to help the knee cap and femur stay in alignment.

How To Do Glute Med Wall Slides – Kinetic U Exercise Series – YouTube

Clinically I have found this exercise to be the most effective in  strengthening the gluteus medius. My wife taught me this exercise. You put your buttocks in contact with the wall and keep the top leg flat up against the wall with your heel and leg in contact with the wall. Perform slowly lifting the top leg up and down 10 x. Perform 2 x a day. Perform 5 x a week for 8 weeks.  Strengthening this muscle according to myriad articles published by Chris Powers Phd of USC in Los Angeles shows excellent results in helping to have better surface area of the knee cap on the thigh bone to reduce pain in patella femoral symptoms.  If I was rating this exercise out of 5 stars I would give it a five. I don’t think I have ever given an exercise a five star rating.




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