The knee is one of the most complex joints in the human body. Having multiple origins and insertion points all across its hinge joint. When it comes to running and exercise, the knee mainly flexes and extends as the primary lever of the leg along with the hip and ankle. This joint also has to absorb a great deal of impact. When we run 4 times our body weight goes through our feet and thus the shock waves travel through the knee. If our knee is not functioning effectively then shock absorption can be ineffective and muscles around the knee can seize/overwork and tendons and ligaments become weakened.
Now as mentioned previously, the knee is a hinge joint but movements shifting laterally and medial can occur in conjunction with the hip joint. common site of knee pain is on the outside of the knee. A key tendon that runs down the outside of the knee is our IT Band. This is easily overloaded and becomes tight from running. The band inserts onto the anterior portion of the knee and if is tight can engage the knee to shift laterally causing the pain.
In general to prevent the pain rest is advised, along with ice for when the area is very painful. A foam roller will also be your best friend as well as your worst enemy. By doing this you’ll loosen it as well as keep the quads from tightening too!